Alpine watersheds represent an important source of freshwater in western Canada. Since rainfall, snowmelt, and glacier melt make minimal contributions to streamflow during winter months, essentially all winter flow in unregulated streams is provided by groundwater discharge. The analysis of winter flow in small to medium scale watersheds (21 to 3900 km2) provides critical information regarding the magnitude of groundwater discharge and its relation to the physiographical characteristics of watersheds such as climate, geology, and topography. Furthermore, hydrologic modelling of a small alpine watershed (4.5 km2) provides insight into the storage mechanisms controlling consistent winter flows. Winter flows were in a narrow range (0.2-0.6 mm d-1) throughout the study area, which suggests that the groundwater storage is filled to the maximum capacity every year, and that the groundwater discharge in winter is mostly controlled by the stationary factors such as the spatial variability of geology, topography, and climatic variables.