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Effect of a Commercial Clearcutting in West Virginia on Overland Flow and Storm Runoff

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A commercial clearcutting was made on a 74-acre gaged watershed on the Fernow Experimental Forest; skidroads were loggers' choice--without limitations as to grade or provisions for drainage. After-logging infiltration rates in the watershed remained well above maximum rainfall intensities except on portions of the skidroads. Overland flow occurred only from the skidroads; it resulted from the combination of rain directly on the skidroads and interception of subsurface flow by the road cuts. Increased storm runoff in the growing seasons--up to a maximum of about ½ area-inch in any one storm--was largely the result of decreases in field-moisture deficiency rather thau changes in the proportions of surface and subsurface flow. This study indicates that, in judging hydrologic condition of logged areas, perhaps as much emphasis should be placed upon road conditions and forest-floor disturbance as upon the amount of timber cut and condition of the stand.

Document Type: Journal Article

Affiliations: Forester-Hydrologist, is a Project Leader in Watershed Management Research, Northeastern Forest Expt. Sta., Forest Service, U. S. Dept. Agric., Parsons, W. Va.

Publication date: 1964-03-01

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  • The Journal of Forestry is the most widely circulated scholarly forestry journal in the world. In print since 1902, the Journal has received several national awards for excellence. The mission of the Journal of Forestry is to advance the profession of forestry by keeping forest management professionals informed about significant developments and ideas in the many facets of forestry: economics, education and communication, entomology and pathology, fire, forest ecology, geospatial technologies, history, international forestry, measurements, policy, recreation, silviculture, social sciences, soils and hydrology, urban and community forestry, utilization and engineering, and wildlife management. The Journal is published bimonthly: January, March, May, July, September, and November.

    2016 Impact Factor: 1.675 (Rank 20/64 in forestry)

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    June 1, 2016 to Feb. 28, 2017

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