Effects of Clearcutting on Soil Water Depletion in an Engelmann Spruce Stand
Water Resources Research
Soil water depletion was monitored for five growing seasons on 0.4 hectare plots in a mature stand of Engelmann spruce in northern Utah. Three plots were then clearcut and in the first season soil water depletion was 20 to 25 cm less than on an uncut plot. This change, which represents a savings of water previously lost to evapotranspiration, is considerably greater than reported for comparable studies in aspen and lodgepole pine. The effects of clearcutting on soil water depletion are expected to persist for as many as 50 years. In the first winter after cutting, peak snow water equivalent in the clearcut plots averaged 91 cm, or 31 cm greater than for the uncut control plots.
Hart, G. E., and D. A. Lomas (1979), Effects of clearcutting on soil water depletion in an Engelmann spruce stand, Water Resour. Res., 15(6), 1598–1602, doi:10.1029/WR015i006p01598.