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Geohydrology of Pratt County

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Geology and Ground-Water Resources of Pratt County, South-Central Kansas

By Donald W. Layton and Delmar W. Berry

Cover of the book; beige paper with brown perspective map and text.

Originally published in 1973 as Kansas Geological Survey Bulletin 205. This is, in general, the original text as published. The information has not been updated.

You may also wish to visit our web site on the Pratt County geologic map.


Pratt County comprises an area of 729 square miles in south-central Kansas. The county is underlain by unconsolidated deposits of Pleistocene age that, in some areas, could yield as much as 3,000 gallons of water per minute to wells. About 26,000 acre-feet of ground water is withdrawn annually for municipal, industrial, and irrigation uses. This withdrawal probably could be doubled without causing serious depletion of storage in the ground-water reservoir or of flow in the South Fork Ninnescah River.

The ground water in Pratt County generally is suitable chemically for all the common uses. However, water in deposits of Pleistocene age in a small area near Cairo is contaminated by saline water from underlying rocks of Permian age. The dissolved-solids discharge in a 7.7-mile reach of the South Fork Ninnescah River near Cairo increases from 30 to 185 tons per day.

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Kansas Geological Survey, Geology
Placed on web Aug. 18, 2008; originally published Feb. 1973.
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