Date of Award


Document Type

Masters Thesis

Degree Name


Organizational Unit

Geography and the Environment

First Advisor

Michael Daniels, Ph.D.

Second Advisor

Robert Jarrett

Third Advisor

Michael Keables

Fourth Advisor

Michael Kerwin


Basin morphometric analysis, Colorado front range, Extreme flooding, Flood hazards, Flooding, Paleoflood


Flooding hazards are common in the Colorado Front Range due to the steep, complex terrain of the mountains where waters quickly spill out onto the most populated region of Colorado. This region has experienced numerous catastrophic floods, such as the 2013 Front Range Floods, the Fort Collins Flood of 1997, and the Big Thompson Canyon Flood of 1976 to name a few. The objective of this study was to analyze basin morphometric characteristics of several drainage basins throughout the Colorado Front Range South Platte River tributaries and determine how these characteristics relate to extreme flooding. This was done through three parts: 1) data collection on prior maximum flood magnitudes through a historic and field-based paleoflood analysis; 2) a morphometric terrain analysis with ArcGIS to delineate basin characteristics such as area, shape, slope, relief, and stream characteristics; and 3) a statistical analysis to determine correlations. Results indicate that drainage area under 2,300 meters elevation, total drainage area, area of basin with slopes greater than 30 percent, total stream length, number of streams, basin magnitude, basin length, basin perimeter, relief ratio, basin relief, and basin orientation are the most important characteristics driving flood magnitudes.

Publication Statement

Copyright is held by the author. User is responsible for all copyright compliance.

Rights Holder

Natalie Trivino


Received from ProQuest

File Format




File Size

453 p.


Geomorphology, Environmental science, Hydrologic sciences