Monroe County Water Resources

Partnering with WVU, the USGS and others, ICWA supports field-based studies that are building a better understanding of Monroe County’s water resources and vulnerabilities.

  • County-wide water study: ICWA worked with the USGS and Monroe County Commission to support the first comprehensive hydrogeologic mapping of the county and the first USGS mapping update since 1926. Members and friends contributed $5,000 to upgrade the USGS stream gauge on Indian Creek at Red Sulphur Springs to add discharge measurements that improve data collection and interpretation during the study. The report, which includes extensive data and maps that will be useful for our county’s planning, was released in December 2023. Read more about the Monroe County water study >>
  • Research on Peters Mountain springs: The multi-year WVU study of interconnectivity of springs and water on Peters Mountain, led by WVU professor of geology Dr. Dorothy Vesper and graduate student Emily Bausher, included data collection in the county from 2015 to 2019. ICWA volunteers helped WVU researchers check data and measure water flow. Results were shared at national and international workshops and published in Emily’s master’s thesis. Dr. Vesper also submitted a report to the WV Department of Health and Human Resources about our springs’ source water vulnerability. Read more about the Peters Mountain research and reports >>
  • Peters Mountain cave mapping, dye-tracing, and new cave in-the-making: Since 2014, ICWA has raised concerns about MVP’s route over Peters Mountain through karst and close to the Rich Creek Spring and Cave. We have worked with DEP karst specialist Nick Schaer, local landowners, and caving experts to help expedite mapping of the previously unexplored Rich Creek Cave (download photos, map and story). Dye-tracing has revealed a groundwater connection between a cave northeast of the MVP corridor to the Rich Creek Cave and Spring on the opposite side. A new sinkhole/cave forming on farmland close to the route also shows a dye-traced connection across the corridor to the Rich Creek Cave and Spring.