Self-affine scaling and subsurface response to snowmelt in steep terrain

Christopher J. Duffy, Keith R. Cooley, Neil Mock, Do Hun Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


The use of local scaling transformations is proposed as a framework for modeling the geometry, and dynamic response of subsurface flow from steep hillslopes. The study site is the Upper Sheep Creek Watershed, a first-order sub-basin in the Reynolds Creek Experimental Watershed, southwest Idaho. The goal of the research is to gain insight into the evolution of snowmelt, subsurface flow, and runoff generation in this rugged volcanic terrain. In this phase of the study rescaling geometrically proportional (self-affine) surface and bedrock slope profiles provide an analytical framework for defining the shape, volume and dynamic changes of saturated flow for this hillslope system. Rescaling self-affine hillslope trajectories along a stream reach, collapses the flow-domain to a unit cube. A dynamic model for hillslope runoff is proposed, and implications for modeling topographic controls on the snowmelt process are suggested.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)395-414
Number of pages20
JournalJournal of Hydrology
Issue number3-4
StatePublished - Mar 1991

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Water Science and Technology


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