Determination of catchment-scale hydrogeological parameters of fractured crystalline rocks using streamflow recession analysis – an example from south-western Poland




recession flow analysis, hydrogeological parameters, mountainous terrain, Poland, fractured-flow


To estimate catchment-scale hydrogeological parameters such as hydraulic conductivity (k) and specific yield (Sy), the streamflow recession analysis method proposed by Brutsaert and Nieber (1977) was used. The analysis employed the technique of fitting a theoretical recession curve to the observed data in which three points of transition between the short- and long-term flow regimes were determined. This method is a simple, fast, and cheap alternative to standard point-based hydrogeological methods using investigations carried out in hydrogeological boreholes. The study area covered the mountainous catchment of the Biała Lądecka River, located in south-western Poland and composed of metamorphic rocks. The hydrogeological environments drained by the Biała Lądecka are two zones, i.e. the zone of weathered covers and rock debris and the zone of fractured rock mass. The k values determined based on the recession analysis were in the boundary zone of the range from 10−4 to 10−5 m/s and they represented the upper range of the values reported in the literature (from 10−4 to 10−7 m/s). The Sy values at a level of 0.38–1.02%, in turn, entirely fitted the literature data. The results confirm the thesis that the recession method, despite certain limitations in terms of its applicability, can be well adapted to the conditions of a mountainous catchment composed of crystalline rocks where a cool temperate climate prevails.


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How to Cite

Olichwer, T. (2024). Determination of catchment-scale hydrogeological parameters of fractured crystalline rocks using streamflow recession analysis – an example from south-western Poland. Geology, Geophysics and Environment, 50(2), 119–130.