2017 Groundwater Tracing in the Barton Springs Edwards Aquifer: Onion Creek and Little Bear Creek
Topic: Groundwater Tracing and Groundwater Flow Studies
Source: City of Austin
A groundwater trace performed in the fall of 2017 verified the connection to Barton Springs from three sites: Crooked Oak Cave on Onion Creek, Fenceline Sink on Little Bear Creek, and Stoneledge Quarry adjacent to Little Bear Creek. Groundwater tracer arrived at Main Barton Spring in 5.4 days from Crooked Oak Cave, in 6.0 days from Fenceline Sink, and in 5.0 days from Stoneledge Quarry. Arrival of groundwater containing the tracers was faster during the high aquifer conditions in 2017 than during traces performed under drought conditions in 1999 and 2000. Results from this study will be applied to aquifer protection and management strategies that include estimating locations of conduits carrying water through the aquifer to Barton Springs.