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This is an image showing evidence of Martian flooding.
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Image from: NASA

Martian Floods

Separate from the Martian outflow channels, or the river valley networks, are large Martian lakes (600 km, or ~1000 miles across) which exhibit evidence of a periodic and catastrophic release of water in the form of floods. This evidence is found with an examination of the shorelines surrounding the lakes.

This evidence suggests the possibility of an equilibrium between the lakes and an aquifer lying close to the surface. As the lake level drops, water comes to it from the aquifer. Evaporation of water from the lake and recondensation close to the surrounding terrain would return water to the aquifer.

An analysis of the combined evidence from the Martian outflow channels, the river valley networks, and catastrophic flooding suggests two possibilities for the global Martian water cycle.

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