What is a ‘water-cycle’?

The water cycle, also known as the hydrologic cycle or the hydrological cycle, describes the continuous movement of water on, above and below the surface of the Earth.
During this process, water changes its state from one phase to another.The stages involved in a complete water cycle are:
Stage I: Evaporation and Transpiration The sun’s energy heats up the lakes, rivers, oceans, swamps and other water bodies which subsequently increase the temperature of the water present in them. Consequently, some water evaporates as vapour into the air. The rising air currents take the vapour up in the sky. 
Stage II: Condensation As the vapours rise high, the cooler temperatures make them cool down and turn back into liquid – condensation. Wind and air currents move the moisture around, leading to the formation of clouds.
Stage III: Precipitation Wind movements cause the clouds particles to collide. As they become water laden, they develop into rain bearing clouds and fall back onto the earth’s surface by the process known as precipitation. This may occur in the form of rain, hail, snow or sleet depending upon the temperature conditions.
Stage IV: Runoff and Infiltration The precipitation either runs off into oceans, rivers and ground surface or is absorbed into the soil (infiltration).

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