Three local lakes now completely full

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By Clayton Chaney
Staff Writer

According to a press release from Pagosa Area Water and Sanitation District (PAWSD) District Manager Justin Ramsey, three out of the five local lakes are now completely full.

Ramsey’s press release notes that Hatcher Lake, Stevens Lake and Lake Forest are completely full.

According to the press release, Lake Pagosa is 5 inches from full and Village Lake is 8 inches from full. 

Total diversion flows are listed at 8 cubic feet per second (cfs).

The West Fork diversion flow is listed at 3 cfs and the Four Mile diversion flow is listed at 5 cfs. 

Water production from May 14 through May 20 was listed at a total of 14.68 million gallons. The Snowball water plant contributed 3.44 million gallons, the Hatcher plant contributed 8.22 million gallons and the San Juan water plant contributed 3.02 million gallons.

Last year, total water production was listed at 10.78 million gallons for those dates.

Drought report

According to the National Integrated Drought Information System (NIDIS), 100 percent of Archuleta County is now in a moderate drought stage.

The NIDIS website notes that under a moderate drought stage dry-land crops may suffer, rangeland growth is stunted, very little hay is available and risk of wildfires may increase.

According to the Colorado Division of Fire Prevention and Control, there are currently no fire restrictions in Archuleta County.

River report

According to the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), the San Juan River was flowing at a rate of 1,060 cfs in Pagosa Springs as of 3 p.m. on Wednesday, May 26. 

Based on 85 years of water records for the site, the average flow rate for this date is 1,470 cfs. 

The highest recorded rate for this date was in 1979 at 4,150 cfs. The lowest recorded rate was 129 cfs, recorded in 2002.

As of 3 p.m. on Wednesday, May 26, the Piedra River near Arboles was flowing at a rate of 898 cfs.

Based on 58 years of water records at this site, the average flow rate for this date is 1,260 cfs.

The highest recorded rate for this date was 4,030 cfs in 1979. The lowest recorded rate was 70.7 cfs in 2002.

Snow report

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 12.9 inches of snow water equivalent as of 3 p.m. on May 25.

That amount is 49 percent of the May 26 median for this site.

The average amount of snow water equivalent for this date is 26.1 inches.

The San Miguel, Dolores, Animas and San Juan River basins were at 36 percent of the May 26 median in terms of snowpack.