Upper Piedmont Groundwater Monitoring and Research Station

Rockingham County, NC

The Upper Piedmont Research Station (UPRS) is located in north-central North Carolina near the town of Reidsville in Rockingham County. The UPRS is a 680-acre tract owned and operated by NCSU and the North Carolina Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services. The property contains the historic 20-acre Chinqua-Penn Plantation and borders the 200-acre Betsy-Jeff Penn 4-H Environmental Camp to the north. The area is rural, and land use is mainly agricultural and low-density residential. The station is located on both agricultural research station and 4-H center properties within the Roanoke River Basin, the upper Wolf Island Creek drainage, between Wolf Island Creek and its tributary Carroll Creek (Figure 1). The topography is typical of the western Piedmont with flat to rolling upland surfaces separated by stream valleys.

The station is located in the Milton geologic terrane. The heterogeneous gneisses and schists of metasedimentary and meta igneous origin are typical of felsic gneiss (GNF) and mafic gneiss (GNM) hydrogeologic units in the western Piedmont physiographic province (Daniel and Dahlen, 2002). The GNF unit represents approximately 20 to 30 percent of the hydrogeologic settings of the Piedmont and Blue Ridge Provinces of North Carolina, whereas GNM unit represents approximately 18 percent. This site was selected because data acquired here should be representative of parts of the Piedmont Physiographic Province in North Carolina. The station consists of two well-cluster transects (Figure), the northern (four well clusters) and the southern (three well clusters), including a total of 19 monitoring wells, 14 piezometers, and one stream gage. The purpose of this study is to characterize the hydrogeology and groundwater quality in a typical Milton belt setting, to determine the association between the groundwater quality and geologic factors, to study groundwater flow differences down “dip slope” vs. down “scarp slope”, effects of groundwater on surface water, and effects of agricultural land uses on groundwater quality.

Upper Piedmont Map


Daniel, C. C., III, and Dahlen, P. R., 2002, Preliminary Hydrogeologic Assessment and Study Plan for a Regional Ground-Water Resource Investigation of the Blue Ridge and Piedmont Provinces of North Carolina: U.S. Geological Survey Water-Resources Investigations Report 02-4105, 60p.



Winston-Salem Regional Office
585 Waughtown St, Winston-Salem, NC 27107
336-771-5000 phone