Mapping of groundwater spring potential zone using geospatial techniques in the Central Nepal Himalayas: A case example of Melamchi–Larke area

  • Motilal GhimireEmail author
  • Prem Sagar Chapagain
  • Shova Shrestha


Studies assessing the groundwater spring potential in the Himalayan mountain slopes are very important for sustainable water resources management and build climate resilience in mountains, but such studies are few in the Himalayas. Hence, this paper attempts to identify the groundwater spring potential zone in the Central Himalayas of Nepal. About 412 groundwater springs were surveyed, which were mainly originated from the weathered, jointed or fractured rock aquifers in the high-grade metamorphosed rocks. Eleven influencing factors, viz., altitude, slope gradient, slope shape, relative relief, flow accumulation, drainage density, geology, lineament density, land use and vegetation density were considered in assessing the groundwater spring potential using the weight of evidence method. Weight indicating the probability of groundwater spring occurrence on multiple classes of each factor was calculated and finally summed up to determine the groundwater spring potential. Gentle slope, low relative relief, high flow accumulation, north- and east-facing slopes, denser lineament density, altitude class of 1500–2500 m, high vegetation density, and forest demonstrated a higher likelihood of spring occurrence. Validation of the groundwater spring potential map was successful, which implies the method can be replicated in a similar biophysical environment, where the hydrogeological or geophysical surveyed data is not available.


Groundwater spring weight of evidence hydrogeology Himalayas 



This paper was based on the research financed under the Climate Change Research Grants Program implemented by the Nepal Academy of Science and Technology. The programme is part of the Mainstreaming Climate Change Risk Management in the Development project. This project is a component of Nepal’s Pilot Program for Climate Resilience and is executed by the Ministry of Population and Environment (Nepal), financed by the Climate Investment Funds, administered by the Asian Development Bank with technical assistance from ICEM, METCON and APTEC. The authors also express their sincere thanks to Mr. Sukadev Khanal and Mr. Udhab Karki who have assisted for GPS-based groundwater spring inventory in the field.


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© Indian Academy of Sciences 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Central Department of GeographyTribhuvan UniversityKirtipur, KathmanduNepal

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