RMRS Air, Water, & Aquatic Environments Science Program US Forest Service - RMRS Air, Water, & Aquatic Environments Science Program

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Rocky Mountain Research Station
 RMRS Science Program Areas
 Air, Water and Aquatics Science Program
 Research Subject Areas
 Field Locations
About the Rocky Mountain Research Station

AWAE Program Headquarters
322 East Front St., Ste 401

Boise, ID 83702

(208) 373-4340


Rocky Mountain Research Station Headquarters

2150 Centre Ave., Bldg A
Fort Collins, CO 80526

(970) 295-5923

United States Department of Agriculture Forest Service.

USDA Link Forest Service Link


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Hydrology: awae research subject areas

river image Hydrology is the scientific discipline concerned with the waters of the Earth, with their occurrence, distribution, and circulation by means of the hydrologic cycle and relations with living things. It also deals with the chemical and physical properties of water in all its phases. At AWAE, this field focuses greatly on snow hydrology, stream-riparian environments, soils, erosion, climate change, wildfire and geomorphology to name a few.


Road & Soil Erosion

Unpaved and native surfaced roads are critical in forest management for recreation, wildlife, and timber production. Forest road erosion accounts for the majority of erosion in forestlands. Road management for these forest areas receives increasing pressures to reduce the amount of erosion that occurs on forest roads to create the lowest impact on the environment and to keep our natural world as picturesque and untouched as possible.


road erosion


While soil erosion is an inevitable and naturally occurring phenomenon, it is greatly accelerated by human interaction. In the future, this could potentially result in degraded water quality considering that forest watersheds are highly valuable in protecting and improving water. Increased land development / land use change can threaten the quality of water that flows through watersheds in the U.S. (Grace, 2008).


Hydrologists (profile pages)
bulletKelly Elder

bulletTom Black

bulletCharlie Luce

bulletSandra Ryan-Burkett


bulletWilliam Elliot

bulletRobert Hubbard

bulletDaniel Neary

bulletPete Robichaud

Subcategories (quick jump)

bulletWatershed Processes

featured Science




clean water image

Clean Water - Insect Outbreaks and Watersheds

Mountain pine bark beetle outbreaks are causing rapid, unprecedented change in the headwater forests of Western North America. Infestation and mortality currently threaten more than 80% of the basal area of many lodgepole pine dominated stands across the West. In Colorado, bark beetle mortality now exceeds 1.5 million acres and the outbreak is projected to ravage 85 to 90% of the mature lodgepole ecosystems in Colorado and Wyoming within the next five years. The consequences of this extensive canopy disturbance and subsequent management activities will characterize western watersheds and forest landscapes for decades to come.


RMRS Hot Topic


Mountain Pine Beetle Impacts to Lodgepole Pine Forests


Consequences of Salvage Logging on Post-Beetle Outbreak Lodgepole Pine Forests



Precipitation Declines In Pacific Northwest Mountains

Precipitation Declines In Pacific Northwest Mountains

High-elevation climate trends in the Pacific Northwest show that streamflow declines are linked to decreases and changes in wind patterns that bring precipitation to mountains.


Science Briefing


Research Subject Areas




bulletAquatic Ecology

bulletAtmospheric Sciences


bulletClimate Change




Fire & Fuels








Plant Physiology

bulletSediment & Erosion

bulletSpatial Analysis

bulletWater & Watershed Processes





Stream Temperature Modeling Website

River Bathymetry Toolkit (RBT)


Sediment Transport data


Bull Trout and Climate Change - Risks, Uncertainties and Opportunities for Mapping the Future


Western Watersheds and Climate Change Workshop - November 17-19, 2009


Rocky Mountain Research Station - Air, Water and Aquatic Environments Sciences Program
Last Modified:  Thursday, 03 April 2014 at 18:36:52 CDT

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