Analysis and Comparison of Cold Water Springs – Cuyamaca Rancho State Park
Wednesday, May 8th, 2013
Cuyamaca Rancho State Park, located roughly forty miles East of San Diego, houses a multitude of different springs and different springs systems contributing to the San Diego Watershed, which offers the opportunity for study on groundwater recharge and discharge. With the availability of past research done in the area supplied by past Geology students of SDSU, there is then the ability to do spring analysis comparisons in order to asses how groundwater chemistry, recharge, discharge, rock- water interactions, and path lengths have changed over time.
The scope of this study covers six springs, one culvert, and one sample of snow melt, with five of the six springs and the culvert having been researched in a previous thesis. The samples were collected during mid February 2013 until March 2013, in which temperature, conductivity, and discharge were all taken on site and geochemical data was accumulated in a lab setting at USGS at a later time. Water quality comparisons were then made, aided by pH, alkalinity, and knowledge of mineral weathering, as well as comparisons between the current spring samples and those of the past thesis [Higley, 1976], in which trends were examined between the current samples and also with those of the past. This was a joint research project, with the coauthor focusing on the analysis of the major ion concentrations of the water samples.