Alluvium underlies floodplains and terraces of all streams.
Alluvium may yield as much as 100 gallons per minute from sands and
gravel along the Green, Tradewater, and Pond Rivers. The unconsolidated
materials yield enough water for a modern domestic supply (more than
500 gallons per day) to wells in valleys of the Green, Pond, and Tradewater
Rivers and their larger tributaries. Where the alluvium is thin and
fine-grained, practically no water is yielded to wells in small valleys.
Water is hard or very hard and may contain objectionable amounts of
Tradewater Formation (Pt)
The Tradewater underlies dissected uplands and ridgetops. Resistant
sandstone beds form cliffs.
The Tradewater generally yields only small quantities of water to wells,
but may yield enough water for a modern domestic supply to wells penetrating
a sufficient thickness of sandstone. Water is fresh near outcrop areas,
but becomes increasingly mineralized with depth.
Caseyville Formation (Pca)
The Caseyville underlies dissected and rolling uplands. Thick sandstone
beds form cliffs and major escarpment.
The Caseyville will yield enough water for a modern domestic supply
to most wells penetrating sandstone. Yields of 100 gallons per minute
have been obtained from wells penetrating thick sections of sandstone.
At depth, the water becomes salty or may have a high sodium bicarbonate
content. Water is hard to very hard and low in dissolved solids. In
the southwestern corner of the county, wells in small upland areas generally
Chesterian Formations (Kinkaid Limestone, Degonia Sandstone, Clore
Limestone, Palestine Sandstone, Menard Limestone, Waltersburg Sandstone,
Vienna Limestone, Tar Springs Sandstone, Glen Dean Limestone, Golconda
Formation, Cypress Sandstone, Paint Creek
Shale, Bethel Sandstone)
Most drilled wells that obtain water from fault zones are adequate for
a domestic supply. Yields are as much as 100 gallons per minute. Flows
of as much as 20 gallons per minute are obtained from fractures along
fault zones and adjacent beds. Most flowing wells are in sandstone.
Water is usually obtained from the hanging walls or gouge zones of faults.
Most shallow wells in broad uplands are dug and usually yield more than
100 gallons per day, but yields are not dependable in dry years. Most
drilled wells produce enough water for residential use. Minor spring
horizons occur near the base of the sandstone on discontinuous shale
beds. Very few of the springs are adequate for a domestic supply, and
many go dry in late fall or winter. Limestone formations yield small
to adequate supplies from solution openings. In lowland areas bordering
streams, some wells furnish enough for a domestic supply. Most wells
in upland areas are inadequate for a domestic supply. On uplands, deep
wells that penetrate solution openings in limestone may produce more
than 5 gallons per minute, but most deep wells on uplands are inadequate
for a domestic supply. Close to outcrop areas, particularly near major
escarpments, yields from perched water bodies generally are inadequate
during dry periods. Springs occur at the base of many limestone formations
where they crop out on escarpments and hillsides. Adjacent to large
upland areas, springs yield as much as 100 gallons per minute and low
flows are more than 5 gallons per minute from some springs.
Kinkaid Limestone, Degonia Sandstone, Clore Limestone (Mcu)
These formations underlie gently rolling uplands having some sinkholes
and fairly steep slopes.
Palestine Sandstone (Mcu)
The Palestine forms a minor bench on hillsides and underlies gently
Menard Limestone, Waltersburg Sandstone, Vienna Limestone (Mcu)
These formations underlie flat uplands and form gentle slopes on hillsides.
Tar Springs Sandstone (Mcu)
The Tar Springs underlies gently rolling uplands, and forms a minor
bench on hillsides.
Glen Dean Limestone (Mcl)
The Glen Dean underlies gently rolling uplands, and forms a gradual
slope above the Hardinsburg bench.
Hardinsburg Sandstone (Mcl)
The Hardinsburg forms a minor escarpment, modified in many places by
faults. It also underlies broad rolling uplands.
Golconda Formation (Haney Limestone, Big Clifty Sandstone, Beech
Creek Limestone Members) (Mcl)
The Golconda underlies gently rolling uplands and forms a steep slope
below a minor Hardinsburg sandstone escarpment.
Cypress Sandstone (Mcl)
Eastward from Christian County, the escarpment wedges out against the
overlying Big Clifty formation. The Cypress underlies broad, flat uplands.
Paint Creek Shale (Mcl)
The Paint Creek forms moderate to rolling slopes below the Cypress Sandstone
escarpment, modified by faults in the Western Kentucky Fluorspar District.
Bethel Sandstone (Mcl)
The Bethel forms the lowest major escarpment from the Western Kentucky
Fluorspar District to Todd County; the escarpment is broken by faults
in the fluorspar district. The Bethel underlies broad, rolling uplands.
Renault Limestone (Mcl)
The Renault forms a moderate slope under the Bethel Sandstone escarpment,
except where modified by faults or a higher sandstone escarpment.
The limestone yields little or no water to wells. Small springs with
low flows of about 5 gallons per minute occur near the top of the formation.
Ste. Genevieve Limestone (Mgl)
The Ste. Genevieve underlies rolling karst uplands and forms moderate
slopes under the Bethel Sandstone escarpment, except where modified
The limestone yields more than 50 gallons per minute to wells from large
solution openings in karst areas. Most wells penetrate solution openings,
but in areas high above perennial streams, these solution openings are
dry in late summer and fall and many wells are inadequate. Springs having
low flows ranging from less than 10 gallons per minute to about 1,500
gallons per minute occur at or near stream level. Smaller springs discharge
from perched water bodies in upland areas, but many go dry during late
summer and fall.
St. Louis and Salem Limestone (Mgl)
These limestones underlie the dissected uplands, ridges, and rolling
karst uplands of Christian County.
Low flows of numerous springs that discharge from near the top of the
formation and near stream level range from less than 10 gallons per minute to about
1,500 gallons per minute. Maximum flows range from less than 100 gallons per minute to more
than 100,000 gallons per minute. Most springs are situated near minor rivers. Drilled
wells generally produce enough water for domestic use. Some wells produce
more than 50 gallons per minute from large solution openings. Most wells high above
perennial streams are adequate.
The U.S. Geological Survey's Hydrologic
Atlas Series, published cooperatively with the Kentucky Geological
Survey, provides hydrologic information for the entire state.
to "Groundwater Resources in Kentucky"