Articles | Volume 24, issue 11
Research article
 | Highlight paper
05 Nov 2020
Research article | Highlight paper |  | 05 Nov 2020

The pulse of a montane ecosystem: coupling between daily cycles in solar flux, snowmelt, transpiration, groundwater, and streamflow at Sagehen Creek and Independence Creek, Sierra Nevada, USA

James W. Kirchner, Sarah E. Godsey, Madeline Solomon, Randall Osterhuber, Joseph R. McConnell, and Daniele Penna


Interactive discussion

Status: closed
Status: closed
AC: Author comment | RC: Referee comment | SC: Short comment | EC: Editor comment
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Peer-review completion

AR: Author's response | RR: Referee report | ED: Editor decision
ED: Publish subject to revisions (further review by editor and referees) (19 Jun 2020) by Matjaz Mikos
AR by James Kirchner on behalf of the Authors (30 Jun 2020)  Author's response    Manuscript
ED: Referee Nomination & Report Request started (07 Jul 2020) by Matjaz Mikos
RR by Jessica Lundquist (11 Aug 2020)
ED: Publish subject to minor revisions (review by editor) (24 Aug 2020) by Matjaz Mikos
AR by James Kirchner on behalf of the Authors (24 Aug 2020)  Author's response    Manuscript
ED: Publish subject to technical corrections (19 Sep 2020) by Matjaz Mikos
Short summary
Streams and groundwaters often show daily cycles in response to snowmelt and evapotranspiration. These typically have a roughly 6 h time lag, which is often interpreted as a travel-time lag. Here we show that it is instead primarily a phase lag that arises because aquifers integrate their inputs over time. We further show how these cycles shift seasonally, mirroring the springtime retreat of snow cover to higher elevations and the seasonal advance and retreat of photosynthetic activity.