More snow in the forecast


By Clayton Chaney
Staff Writer

The Pagosa Springs area received over 10 inches of snow this past Tuesday, bringing some much-needed additional snowpack to the area.

 More snow is expected to be on the way, with Wolf Creek Ski Area forecasting more than 50 inches to be received over the next week.

The National Weather Service is predicting a 70 percent chance of snow showers on Saturday, Jan. 23.

According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture National Water and Climate Center’s snowpack report, the Wolf Creek Summit, at 11,000 feet of elevation, had 16.4 inches of snow water equivalent as of noon on Jan. 20.

That amount is 87 percent of the Jan. 20 median for the site. 

 The San Miguel, Dolores, Animas and San Juan River basins were at 67 percent of the Jan. 20 median in terms of snowpack.

Water report

According to a Wednesday press release from Pagosa Area Water and Sanitation District Manager Justin Ramsey, Hatcher Lake is 38 inches from full. This is up 3 inches from last week’s reading of 41 inches from full.

 Stevens Lake is currently 61 inches from full, rising 1 inch from last week’s reading of 2 inches from full.

Lake Pagosa’s water level rose 1 inch from last week, bringing the current water level to 13 inches from full.

Village Lake also rose 1 inch from last week’s reading, bringing the current water level to 8 inches from full.

Lake Forest remains consistent with last week’s reading of 3 inches from full.

The West Fork diversion flow rate is listed at 3 cubic feet per second (cfs) and the Four Mile diversion flow is listed at 2 cfs, keeping total diversion flows at 5 cfs.

Water production from Jan. 8 through Jan. 14 was listed at a total of 10.64 million gallons. The Snowball water plant contributed 2.99 million gallons, while the Hatcher plant contributed 7.95 million gallons. 

Last year, total water production was listed at 9.63 million gallons for those dates. 

River Report

 According to the U.S. Geological Survey, the San Juan River was flowing at a rate of 44.4 cfs in Pagosa Springs as of 1 p.m. on Wednesday, Jan. 20. 

Based on 85 years of water records, the average flow rate for this date is 57 cfs. 

The highest recorded rate for this date was in 2005 at 116 cfs. The lowest recored rate was 30 cfs, recorded in 1961.