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Kansas Geological Survey, Open-file Report 2018-18

2018 Water-Level Data Acquisition Statistics

by Brett Bennett and Mary Brohammer

KGS Open-file Report 2018-18
Dec. 2018


The field-measurement phase of the 2018 annual cooperative water-level measurement program was successfully completed by the Kansas Geological Survey (KGS) and the Division of Water Resources (DWR), Kansas Department of Agriculture, prior to March 1, 2018. The annual program is designed to regionally sample the High Plains aquifer in Kansas so trends can be established and evaluated for effective incorporation into water-resource management strategies. Water levels were recorded in 97.3% of the 1,399 network wells in 2018. The KGS measured 554 wells and the three DWR offices (Garden City, Stafford, and Stockton) measured 807 wells. Data acquisition by KGS staff was completed in January.

A spatial analysis of the 2017 annual network well distribution identified nine locations that required additional water-level data to permit continuous and uniform sampling of the High Plains aquifer. Researchers then identified wells in these locations that have sufficient construction and historical information and landowner cooperation to attempt a water-level measurement. Of the 28 wells designated to replace existing wells or fill gaps in the network, 20 were measured and were incorporated into the network for 2019. They will be measured in all future measurement campaigns unless the wells become unreliable or are plugged. Yearly geostatistical studies will define undersampled areas and assist in selecting optimum locations for replacement wells to eliminate holes in the hexagonal network used to assure uniform sampling of the aquifer.

January 2018 Acquisition KGS DWR Total
Number of network wells in 2018 564 835 1,399
Number of counties 16 32 48
2018 provisional (new) wells 10 18 28
# provisional wells measured 10 10 20
# wells successfully measured 554 807 1,361
# wells MIA* 11 29 40
# wells measured for quality assurance (QA) 56 -- 56
# wells targeted for removal 1 5 6
*Wells with zero depth reading, where measurement failed, or that were marked for removal.

KGS Field Crew, January 2018

Joe Anderson, Brett Bennett, Andrea Brookfield, Rex Buchanan, Rick Miller, Jeremy Scobee, Brett Wedel, and Brownie Wilson

Wells Measured in 2018

Type of Well KGS DWR Total
Irrigation 469 619 1,088
Unused (monitor or abandoned) 68 152 220
Stock 11 47 58
Household 6 2 8
Depth to Water      
Less than 100 ft 119 510 629
100 to 200 ft 271 197 468
200 to 300 ft 145 57 202
More than 300 ft 18 43 61
Drill Depth of Well      
Unknown 63 120 183
Less than 100 ft 47 257 304
100 to 200 ft 116 232 348
200 to 300 ft 171 119 290
300 to 400 ft 85 38 123
More than 400 ft 82 69 151
Measurement Characteristics      
Oil on the water 60 (10.6%) 41 (4.9%) 101 (7.2%)
Difficult measurement
(restrictions, snags, catches)
35 (6.2%) 22 (2.6%) 57 (4.1%)

In-field confidence in a particular measurement was qualitatively determined through inspection of chalk cut while general accuracy was quantitatively appraised using historical and local trends.

Measurement Confidence

Wells Measured Only KGS DWR Total
Once 453 769 1,222
Twice 90 33 123
Three times 9 5 14
Four times 2 0 2
Total Measurements      
Primary and Quality Assurance (QA) 726 878 1,604
Measurements Judged      
Excellent 495 583 1,078
Good 44 201 245
Fair 15 29 44

2018 Provisional Wells

KGS (10 new wells—10 measured)

04S 40W 26DAB 01   Cheyenne
24S 42W 08CBD 01   Hamilton
11S 33W 28ADA 01   Logan
32S 30W 35CBA 01   Meade
34S 43W 07BDD 01   Morton
02S 36W 31BDA 01   Rawlins
03S 32W 27BCC 01   Rawlins
32S 33W 08A   01   Seward
08S 42W 06DAC 01   Sherman
16S 37W 24BCB 01   Wichita

DWR (10 new wells—9 measured)

22S 34W 29DBB  01   Finney
22S 33W 22ACC  01   Finney
23S 32W 05CAA  01   Finney
22S 31W 13DDB  01   Finney
23S 33W 10CCDD 01   Finney
23S 32W 03CDD  01   Finney
23S 33W 19DCC  01   Finney
22S 34W 23BBBB 01   Finney
29S 38W 31DCD  01   Grant
29S 31W 19CCC  01   Haskell
30S 32W 31BBC  01   Haskell
23S 35W 28DDD  01   Kearny
25S 36W 19CDB  01   Kearny
28S 20W 01DCB  01   Kiowa
28S 11W 34D    01   Pratt
29S 12W 12BAD  01   Pratt
28S 14W 32C    01   Pratt
21S 09W 18AAB  01   Rice

Wells Tagged in 2018 for Removal from the Network and Reason

KGS (1 well)

34S 39W 15CAD 01   Morton     Submersible pump installed limiting access.

DWR (5 wells)

01S 16W 31CBB 01 Phillips     Dry well; new well measured.
24S 08W 18BAC 01 Reno         Well no longer exists.
24S 28W 31DD  01 Gray         Well no longer exists.
27S 30W 08BBA 01 Gray         Well no longer exists.
30S 38W 15DBC 01 Grant        Well is plugged.


The two appendices to this report are summary tables.

Appendix A—Contains a summary of information for all wells measured by the KGS. This appendix includes county, well legal description (ID), and 2018 depth of water below ground surface (BGS). Quality Assurance measurements (QA) and Provisional wells (PROV) are also identified.

Appendix B—Contains a summary of information for all wells measured by the DWR. This appendix includes county, well legal description (ID), and 2018 depth of water below ground surface (BGS). Provisional wells (PROV) are also identified.

Both the current year's measurements and historical water-level data are archived and maintained at the KGS in a centralized database (WIZARD) that can be accessed at the KGS website at The township-range-section identifier and the water level for each well measured are also provided in tabular form as part of this report, which can be found online at under the heading "2018 Reports."

The complete text of this report is available as an Adobe Acrobat PDF file.

Read the PDF version (284 kB)

Kansas Geological Survey, Geophysics
Placed online Dec. 20, 2018
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