Key Topics
Canadian Rockies Hydrological Observatory
Marmot Creek Research Basin
Data-Stream from Smith Creek & Marmot Creek Research Basins



What We Do...

Hydrology is a physical environmental science which seeks to describe, explain and predict the occurrence, circulation, distribution and properties of freshwater, and its relationships with the terrestrial and atmospheric environments.

Studies investigate the interaction between the hydrological cycle and water resources, spanning surface runoff, groundwater, atmospheric interactions, watershed characteristics, channel dynamics, and water quality. Canadian hydrology is particularly complex as a result of the extremes of climate and landscape represented: research therefore covers the behaviours of water in all its physical states - gaseous (water vapour), liquid (rain, streams, soil moisture, groundwater), and solid (snow, ice, permafrost).

Schematic of the hydrological cycle

Hydrology is therefore highly interdisciplinary, incorporating aspects of geomorphology, geology, biology, physics, chemistry, mathematics and computer science: it is an important component of environmental and atmospheric science, aquatic and terrestrial ecology, forestry and agricultural science, geotechnical, environmental and agricultural engineering, resource economics, development studies, toxicology and environmental health.

One of the challenges for anyone attempting to identify sources of expertise in hydrological research is that these might well be found in a number of faculties, schools and departments, even within a single institution. The Centre for Hydrology aims to solve this problem, by providing an interdisciplinary hub for the University of Saskatchewan's contributions to the science. Our activities focus on advancing theoretical understanding, and improving practical aspects of the science, particularly within the context of changes in climate and land-use.

To this end, CH fills the following roles;

  • co-ordinates a variety of individual and collective research projects
  • provides a single point of contact representing the University's hydrological expertise to government, industry, the media and other institutions
  • participates in (and manages several) major inter-institutional research programs
  • supervises the education and training of post-graduate students
  • offers courses as part of undergraduate degree programs
  • maintains lab facilities, instrumentation and field study areas

The following links lead to additional information about CH's work;






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Centre for Hydrology
University of Saskatchewan
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