Snowpack remains over 100 percent


By Simone Mounsamy
Staff Writer

According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture National Water and Climate Center’s snow pack report, the Wolf Creek summit, at 11,000 feet of elevation, had 13.1 inches of snow water equivalent as of 1:15 p.m. on Dec. 23.

The median snow water equivalent amount for that date was 13 inches.

While the amount of 13.1 inches of snow water equivalent is 101 percent of the Dec. 23 median for Wolf Creek summit, the entire basin, including the San Miguel, Dolores, Animas and San Juan River basins, were at 72 percent of the Dec. 23 median in terms of snowpack.

Last week’s reading showed that the Wolf Creek summit had 12.7 inches of snow water equivalent.

Lake levels

According to a report from Pagosa Area Water and Sanitation District Manager Justin Ramsey, this week, Hatcher Lake is 47 inches from full, contributing to a five-week trend of level increase. Last week, it was 50 inches from full.

Stevens Lake is currently 63 inches from full. Last week, Stevens Lake was 61 inches from full. This is the lowest level that Stevens Lake has had in five weeks.

Lake Pagosa, Village Lake and Lake Forest levels all remained the same from last week.

Lake Pagosa maintained 16 inches from full this week from last week.

Village Lake kept its level of 10 inches from full.

Lake Forest remained at 3 inches from full.

Total diversion flows remain at 5 cubic feet per second (cfs) this week. The West Fork diversion is still contributing 3 cfs and the Four Mile diversion is adding another 2 cfs.

From Dec. 11 through Dec. 17 of this year, total water production was recorded at 10.20 million gallons.

The Snowball water treatment plant added 2.98 million gallons to that total, while the Hatcher water treatment plant added 7.22 million gallons.

Last year in that same time frame, water production was listed at 9.52 million gallons, with 2.99 million gallons contributed from the Snowball water treatment plant. The amount added from Hatcher water treatment plant was 6.53 million gallons.

From Dec. 4 through Dec. 10 of this year, water production was listed at 9.26 million gallons.
River report

As of Wednesday, the San Juan River had a flow of 45.4 cfs and the average for Dec. 23 was 62 cfs, according to the U.S. Geological Survey.

Based on 85 years of water re- cords, the San Juan River had the lowest flow total for Dec. 23 back in 1990, when the river had a flow of 24 cfs.

The highest flow total came in 2011, when the San Juan River had a flow of 130 cfs.