Relating low-flow characteristics to the base flow recession time constant at partial record stream gauges
Article first published online: 5 JAN 2007
Copyright 2007 by the American Geophysical Union.
Water Resources Research
Volume 43, Issue 1, January 2007
How to Cite
2007), Relating low-flow characteristics to the base flow recession time constant at partial record stream gauges, Water Resour. Res., 43, W01201, doi:10.1029/2006WR005293., and (
- Issue published online: 5 JAN 2007
- Article first published online: 5 JAN 2007
- Manuscript Accepted: 10 OCT 2006
- Manuscript Revised: 18 SEP 2006
- Manuscript Received: 27 JUN 2006
- base flow;
- low-flow characteristics;
- partial record sites;
 Base flow recession information is helpful for regional estimation of low-flow characteristics. However, analyses that exploit such information generally require a continuous record of streamflow at the estimation site to characterize base flow recession. Here we propose a simple method for characterizing base flow recession at low-flow partial record stream gauges (i.e., sites with very few streamflow measurements under low-streamflow conditions), and we use that characterization as the basis for a practical new approach to low-flow regression. In a case study the introduction of a base flow recession time constant, estimated from a single pair of strategically timed streamflow measurements, approximately halves the root-mean-square estimation error relative to that of a conventional drainage area regression. Additional streamflow measurements can be used to reduce the error further.