Ground Water, continued
Utilization of WaterDuring the course of the investigation, data were obtained on 241 wells in Reno County (Table 11). The wells listed in Table 11 include 150 domestic and stock wells, 16 public-supply wells, 9 industrial wells, 3 irrigation wells, and 63 not in use or used only for observing water levels.
Domestic and Stock Supplies
Most domestic and stock water supplies in Reno County are obtained from wells. In a few places ponds are used to supply stock water. The ground water in this area generally is suitable for domestic use except for an area in the southeastern part of the county where the water comes from Permian rocks and is very hard. There, a few families use cistern water for drinking and washing but others use the well water even though it is not desirable. In a few local areas the ground water has become polluted from industrial wastes. In Reno County the supply of ground water available is generally sufficient for all domestic uses.
Public Water Supplies
Eight communities in Reno County have public water supplies. Descriptions of the water systems and wells in these communities are given below, and additional information may be found in the table of well records at the end of this report (Table 11).
Hutchinson--Hutchinson, the largest city in Reno County (population 33,575), is supplied water by the privately owned Hutchinson Water Co. from eight gravel-walled wells in the city. These wells obtain water from the alluvium and Wisconsinan deposits and range in depth from 50 to 75 feet. Yields of the wells range from 750 to 2,000 gallons a minute. Water is pumped directly into the distribution system and the required pressure is maintained by varying the number of wells pumping. The pumps of six wells are controlled from a central station to facilitate the maintenance of pressure. Two wells (23-6-1bdc and 23-6-12cd) are used continuously and provide most of the water. At times of peak loads additional wells are used. The average daily use of water is about 3 million gallons. The monthly and annual pumpage is given in Table 4. The quality of water varies from well to well. The wells providing the water of poorest quality are pumped only during periods of peak loads or for emergency use. The water at Hutchinson is very hard and is not treated except by chlorination at the wells (Table 5).
Table 4--Monthly and annual pumpage of water for the City of Hutchinson, in million of gallons (data provided by the Hutchinson Water Co.).
Haven--The town of Haven (population 720) is supplied by three gravel-walled wells on the west edge of town. The wells obtain water from the Meade formation and Wisconsinan deposits south of the Arkansas River. Two of the wells are equipped with centrifugal pumps and yield about 250 gallons a minute each. The third well is equipped with a turbine pump and also yields about 250 gallons a minute. The water is pumped directly into the mains, and the system is equipped with a 55,000-gallon elevated steel tank for storage and pressure maintenance. The daily consumption of water varies from 60,000 gallons to 100,000 gallons. The water is hard and is not treated (Table 5).
Buhler--Prior to 1938 the water supply for Buhler was obtained from three wells in the Little Arkansas River valley. These wells were abandoned because of low yield and infiltration of fine sand. In 1938 two wells (22-4-l2dd1 and 22-4-12dd2) were drilled in the Meade formation 4 miles east of the city. These wells are 88 and 98 feet deep and are on the west edge of the McPherson Valley. Well 22-4-l2dd1 had a yield of 269 gallons a minute and a drawdown of 7.7 feet; well 22-4-12dd2 had a yield of 201 gallons a minute and a drawdown of 2 feet. The wells are gravel packed and are equipped with turbine pumps. For many years water was pumped directly into the distribution system, but in 1949 a treatment plant was built and the water has been treated since then. The water from the wells is high in carbon dioxide and thus is corrosive. The untreated water has a hardness of 461 parts per million, of which about two-thirds is of the carbonate type. The water is softened to a hardness of about 130 parts per million. The daily consumption of water averages about 35,000 gallons. The system includes an elevated steel storage tank having a capacity of 50,000 gallons.
Nickerson--The water supply for Nickerson is obtained from two wells that penetrate the alluvium of the Arkansas River valley in the center of the city. The wells are equipped with turbine pumps and have a combined yield of about 900,000 gallons a day. The average daily use of water is about 100,000 gallons. The water is pumped directly into the mains, and the system is equipped with a 50,000-gallon elevated steel tank for storage and pressure maintenance. The water is hard and is not treated (Table 5).
Arlington--The water supply for Arlington is obtained from two drilled wells in the Meade formation at the west edge of the city. The wells are equipped with turbine pumps that pump the water directly into the distribution system. The capacity of the two wells is about 170,000 gallons a day, and the average consumption is about 30,000 gallons a day. An elevated steel tank having a capacity of 50,000 gallons is used for storage. The water has a hardness of 141 parts per million and is not treated.
Sylvia--The water supply for Sylvia is obtained from two wells tapping the Meade formation and the Crete member of the Sanborn formation in the northwestern part of town. The wells are equipped with turbine pumps. When tested, each well had a yield of about 250 gallons a minute and a drawdown of 1 foot. The total capacity of the two wells as equipped is about 720,000 gallons a day and the consumption is about 20,000 gallons a day. Water is pumped to an elevated steel storage tank having a capacity of 50,000 gallons. The water has a hardness of 136 parts per million and is not treated.
Turon--The town of Turon obtains its water supply from two wells penetrating gravel of the Meade formation and the Crete member of the Sanborn formation in the northwestern part of town. Well 26-10-5dd1 is equipped with a turbine pump, which discharges water into an elevated steel storage tank having a capacity of 50,000 gallons. Well 26-10-5dd2 is equipped with a centrifugal pump and is used only in an emergency. Well 26-10-5dd2 yields an estimated 50 gallons a minute and well 26-10-5dd1 yields 125 gallons a minute. The average daily use is about 20,000 gallons. The water has a hardness of 196 parts per million and is chlorinated.
Pretty Prairie--The Pretty Prairie water supply is obtained from two wells penetrating the Meade formation and gravel of Blancan age in the western part of town. The wells are equipped with turbine pumps, which discharge water to an elevated storage tank having a capacity of 40,000 gallons. The water has a hardness of 129 parts per million (Table 5).
Many industrial wells are in use in Reno County, principally in and near Hutchinson. The largest users of water are the Central Fiber Products Co., the Kansas Power and Light Co., the Carey Salt Co., and the Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railway Co. Water from industrial wells is used for cooling, washing, ice manufacturing, and air conditioning, and by meat-packing plants, creameries, and foundries.
The Central Fiber Products Co. is supplied by four wells ranging in depth from 62 to 68 feet. Water is obtained from terrace deposits near the foot of the sandhills in the NE cor. sec. 8, T. 23 S., R. 5 W. The combined yield of the wells is 2,500 to 3,000 gallons a minute. The Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railway Co. is supplied by two wells in the NE SE sec. 4, T. 23 S., R. 5 W. These wells are 40 feet deep and obtain water from terrace deposits near the foot of the sandhills. The yield from each well is 215 gallons a minute, and the annual pumpage is about 54 million gallons. In the fall of 1949 the Kansas Power and Light Co. had three wells drilled in the SE SW sec. 4, T. 23 S., R. 5 W. These wells are 50 to 55 feet deep and obtain water from terrace deposits of Wisconsinan age. Well 23-5-4cda was pumped at the rate of 1,600 gallons a minute for 4 hours and had a drawdown of 17 feet. The other wells were not tested, but an examination of samples of the gravel penetrated by the wells indicates that the yields from these wells should be almost as great as that of the well tested. About 300 gallons a minute is pumped from each well. The water from these wells is used to cool the condensers in the powerplant northeast of Hutchinson.
Not all industrial wells in Reno County were inventoried, so the total amount of water pumped from industrial wells is not known; however, the amount unquestionably exceeds the pumpage of the Hutchinson Water Co.
During the drought period from 1930 to 1939, some irrigation wells were drilled in parts of Reno County. Most of these wells have been abandoned, and at the time of the report no large plants were in operation. Water from several small wells was used for irrigating gardens and orchards, but an inventory was not made of the amount of water pumped in 1949. The total pumpage for irrigation was small in comparison with other uses, however, even before the larger wells were abandoned.
Kansas Geological Survey, Reno County Geohydrology|
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Web version Feb. 2001. Original publication date Aug. 1956.