USGS Water Science Centers are located in each state.
Water Resources of South Dakota
Welcome to the USGS Web page for water resources in South Dakota. Here, you will find information on South Dakota's rivers and streams. You will also find information
on ground water, water quality, and many other topics. The USGS operates the most extensive satellite network of stream-gaging stations in South Dakota, many of which form
the backbone of flood-warning systems.
Intantaneous Data Archive - IDA: Since 1889, the U.S. Geological Survey has collected continuous stage, discharge, and other instantaneous time-series data on the nations rivers and streams. These time-series data have been and are typically recorded at intervals ranging from 5 to 60 minutes. These instantaneous data have been processed into and published as various daily values, such as the daily maximum, minimum, and/or mean. Because the published record are daily values, the original instantaneous data have not historically been officially approved, published, or made widely available. The IDA web site has been established to make available as much historical instantaneous data from USGS data collection stations as possible. Although this site currently serves instantaneous discharge (streamflow) data only, work is planned to extend it to other time-series parameters in the future.
WaterAlert: Now you can receive instant, customized updates about water conditions by subscribing to WaterAlert,a new service from the U.S. Geological Survey. Whether you are watching for floods, interested in recreational activities or concerned about the quality of water in your well, WaterAlert allows you to receive daily or hourly updates about current conditions in rivers, lakes and groundwater when they match conditions of concern to you.
See press release for additional information.
Black Hills Area Floods Since 1877
The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), National Weather Service, and the South Dakota Department of Transportation have cooperated on compiling a chronology of flood events in the Black Hills area that have occurred since 1877. The Black Hills area of western South Dakota has a history of damaging flash floods that have resulted primarily from exceptionally strong rain-producing thunderstorms, such as the 1972 flood that claimed the lives of 238 people and the more recent 2007 flood in the Hermosa area. Many other notable floods have occurred in the Black Hills area since settlement of the Black Hills in the late 1800s. These notable floods include the 1883 flood in Deadwood, the 1907 flood in the Piedmont area, the 1924 flood in the Belle Fourche area, and the 1937 flood in the Hot Springs area. The project Web site provides the chronology of flood events that are documented in some way since 1877 in newspapers, books, photographs, and technical reports.
The purpose of the flood compilation is to provide documentation and a context for the frequency and relative magnitude of historical large floods in the Black Hills area. The improved knowledge of flooding in the Black Hills area will be used to aid in the application of paleoflood survey techniques that is being performed by the USGS in cooperation with the South Dakota Department of Transportation.
The report "Flood-Frequency Analyses from Paleoflood Investigations for Spring, Rapid, Boxelder, and Elk Creeks, Black Hills, Western South Dakota" was completed in cooperation with the South Dakota Department of Transportation, Federal Emergency Management Agency, City of Rapid City, and West Dakota Water Development District. The report provides improved flood-frequency estimates of low-probability floods for major streams in the central Black Hills through paleoflood investigations, which included analyses of stratigraphic evidence, timing, and magnitudes for large floods on Spring Creek, Rapid Creek (two reaches), Boxelder Creek (two subreaches), and Elk Creek. The stratigraphic records and resulting long-term flood chronologies, locally extending back more than 2,000 years, were combined with observed peak-flow records and historical flood observations to derive flood-frequency estimates. The report is available at http://pubs.usgs.gov/sir/2011/5131/.
Whether you drink water from your tap, use electricity or canoe down your local river, chances are you benefit from USGS streamgage information. So what is a streamgage and what does it do for you? This CoreCast episode gives you the inside scoop on your silent superhero.
2011: The Year of the Flood
Devastating floods across much of the United States were severe and unrelenting during the spring and summer of 2011. When floods happen, USGS crews are among the first-responders. Often working in dangerous conditions, USGS scientists measure streamflow and river levels, repair and install streamgages, measure water quality and changes in sediment flow, and assess river changes. From flood forecasts to difficult decisions about flood management, science is critical for flood preparations and response.