The hydrological cycle involves all forms of water – solid ice, liquid water, gaseous vapor – moving across the landscape. Here a simple illustration of this cycle. Surface water in our lakes, rivers, and oceans evaporates (liquid to gas). It then condenses in atmospheric clouds and precipitates back down to the surface (gas to liquid) as rain, snow, or hail. Some of this percolates down to the water table (our groundwater) and some of it runs off back into surface water bodies. Some of our water is also trapped in glaciers.
I see that you asked this question in Climate Change. Global climate change does indeed have an effect on the hydrological cycle – in periods of global cooling, those glaciers will expand and ocean temperatures will drop, decreasing precipitation in some areas. Of course, we are in a period of global warming, so the ocean temperatures are rising, glaciers are losing ice, and while precipitation will indeed drop in some areas, there is also supposed to be an increase in tropical storms (due partly to higher ocean temperatures).
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