WSA Duck Lake No. 1
Observation well WSA Duck Lake No. 1 was completed in medium to coarse grained sand of a surficial deltaic deposit in order to observe natural groundwater level fluctuations in a surficial aquifer. It was constructed in 1964 to a depth of 13.26 meters. The water table fluctuates between 3 to 5 m below the ground surface. A very small amount of water migrates down towards the deeper aquifer in which observation well WSA Duck Lake 2 is completed. The water level in Duck Lake 1 is approximately 20 metres higher than in the deeper aquifer, indicating a downward vertical gradient.
Most of the recharge to the surficial aquifer occurs in April-June due to spring snowmelt with occasional recharge events in summer and fall after heavy rains. Part of the infiltrated water is taken up via the roots of vegetation as shown by the sharp decline of the water level in summer. The remainder of the water moves laterally toward the headwaters of McFarlane Creek in a steady year-round flow, evidenced by the continuing slow decline of the water table during the winter and the perennial flow in the creek. Thus minimum water levels for the well occur in March and maximums in May-June, with changes of up to three quarters of a metre in some years. The record low of about 498.2 metres occurred early in 2004 as a result of the 2001-2003 droughts. Record high peak water levels of about 500.2 metres occurred in 2013 after several wet years with heavy snow and rain.
The water from WSA Duck Lake No. 1 is of the calcium-bicarbonate type with an average Total Dissolved Solids concentration of approximately 282 mg/L.
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