5.7 REPUBLICAN / ARIKAREE RIVER BASIN
The Republican/Arikaree River basin in eastern Colorado encompasses an area of 8,775 square miles and comprises four major streams: the South Fork Republican River, the Arikaree, the North Fork Republican River, and Frenchman Creek. Management of the waters in the Republican and Arikaree River basins are under the jurisdiction of Colorado Water Division 1, with offices located in Greeley. As of February 2001, only 67 wells were recorded within the confines of the mapped alluvium of the Republican River and its tributaries. The majority of the alluvial wells are located on the South Fork Republican River and the Arikaree River. The occurrence and distribution of alluvium along the Republican and Arikaree Rivers are shown in yellow on Figure 5.7-1.
As is characteristic of the Eastern Plains, there is little variation in elevation in the Republican River basin. Elevation ranges from about 5,000 feet at the headwaters to about 3,500 feet where the streams exit the state. Northeastern Yuma County from Wray northward is composed of sand hills, with no surface drainage except on the periphery. The sand hills extend into southeastern Phillips County and westward into eastern Washington County. The landscape is characterized by flat to gently rolling grasslands. Agriculture is the dominant land use in the basin. Population in the area is sparse, with 3 or fewer persons per square mile in Lincoln and Washington Counties, and 4 to 9 persons per square mile in Kit Carson, Phillips, and Yuma Counties.