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Sterling High Groundwater Area 
DWR > Division Offices > Division 1 (Greeley) > Sterling High Groundwater Area

Click here to view and export all (historic and recent) groundwater level data for the Gilcrest study wells.  Data can be viewed and downloaded using Colorado’s Decision Support System (CDSS) groundwater water levels tool. The CDSS tool provides groundwater level data, which can be viewed in graphs or tables, and can be exported as a PDF or data files (CSVs). A map of the current monitoring network can be found here.

Background and Data Collection Effort
In 2011, homeowners notified state officials of undesirable impacts related to high groundwater levels, specifically in the Country Club Hills and Pawnee Ridge subdivisions in Sterling, CO.  The Governor's Water Policy Advisor, John Stulp, convened a number of meetings with local stakeholders to understand the issues.  In response to those meetings, the Colorado Water Conservation Board (CWCB) allocated funding for the Division of Water Resources (DWR) to undertake a multi-year project to gather data necessary to identify the factors contributing to high groundwater levels. Additionally, CWCB and DWR commissioned independent data analysis, interpretation of the potential factors of high groundwater, and mitigation recommendations, which Brown and Caldwell performed. To see the scope of the Sterling High Groundwater Study and a copy of the Brown and Caldwell final report, please refer to the “Studies” Section at the bottom of this page.  Between 2012 and 2016, DWR staff undertook frequent monitoring of groundwater levels; compiling climate, diversion, and recharge data; and characterizing the hydrogeology within the areas of interest. A summary report of these data, “2012-2016 Sterling Data Summary”, is located in the “Studies” Section.

Groundwater Level Data
Project-specific groundwater level information has been collected since 2012, and the latest piezometers (shallow groundwater monitoring wells) were installed in 2013. The monitoring network is focused in and near the Country Club Hills and Pawnee Ridge subdivisions. Except for N. Sterling PZ-1, N. Sterling PZ-2, and SGW-1, all wells shown on the study area map are equipped with electronic pressure transducers that record water levels once per day. SGW-1 and the N. Sterling piezometers are monitored on a quarterly basis by DWR staff. We greatly appreciate the assistance and the cooperation from local landowners. 

Climate Data
Precipitation and climate are major facets of the hydrologic cycle and groundwater recharge and provide environmental perspective for groundwater level data. The Northern Colorado Water Conservancy District (NCWCD) provides comprehensive climate data collected at local weather stations in the Sterling area. If interested, one can visit NCWCD’s weather page, which can be found here. Data can be viewed in graph or tabular form, and data tables can be exported to Excel. The station closest to Sterling is the Sterling #108 station, located between US Highway 6 and the South Platte River just south of Sterling. The Community Collaborative Rain, Hail, and Snow Network (CoCoRaHS) also provides daily precipitation data near Sterling, which can be found here under Station # CO-LG-2, “Sterling 1.8 NW”.  

Diversion and Recharge Data
Seepage from both the recharge ponds and ditches influence groundwater recharge and thus the groundwater levels. There are a number of diversion and recharge ditches located in the study area. Links to Colorado diversion and recharge databases, maps of ditches, and summaries of the 2012-2016 recharge and diversion data from are included the 2012-2016 Sterling Data Summary.

Please contact the Hydrogeology Section of the Division of Water Resources with any questions or for additional information.

Studies
1. Scope of Work, Geology, and Drilling Info
2. Sterling & Gilcrest LaSalle High Groundwater Analysis - Brown & Caldwell- Final Report
3. 2012-2016 Sterling Data Summary

Presentations
1. April 11, 2012 High Groundwater Issues: Sterling Public Meeting
2. September 9, 2014 Sterling Pilot Project Update
3. February 11, 2014 Sterling Pilot Project Update
4. Pawnee Ridge HOA Emergency Dewatering