Groundwater and surface water are often studied as different systems; however, one commonly affects the other. Bank storage, the temporary storage and release of stream water in adjacent aquifers, can contribute a considerable amount of discharge to a river and can be a component in the transport and fate of a contaminant. Studies document the effects of increasing stage and increasing storm duration; however, these controls are often investigated separately. This project examined which factor, peak stage or storm duration, was more influential on the bank-storage process. The study focused on a small reach of a third-order, meandering, perennial stream. A 3-D, transient-state numerical model (MODFLOW) was created of the study site, and 36 simulations were run at various peak stages and storm durations. Peak stage and storm durations, while both influential, affected different areas of the bank-storage process. Peak stage was statistically more influential in controlling the maximum volume of bank storage (~3.6×) and the volume of the storage that remained in the system at 100 h (~1.1×). Longer storm duration generated a slower return of water, thus increasing the retention of bank storage. Parafluvial exchange was an important factor in bank storage along a meandering stream, suggesting that at least 2-D, ideally 3-D, models need to be employed in evaluating bank storage.
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