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Thread: 2017 Utah Snowpack

  1. #21
    Moderator jman's Avatar
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    2017 Utah Snowpack

    Quote Originally Posted by rockgremlin View Post
    @jman - thanks for continually updating this thread.

    I wonder how much Lake Powell will rise this year with the abundant snowpack?
    Thanks. I find it fun just to keep track of.

    It's funny that you mention Lake Powell because just today a coworker was mentioning the same thing. I just respond very dramatically with a southern accent with "Lake Powell will rise again!!" (a parody of the saying back from the 1800s - "the South will rise again"). Lol

    I wonder what the snotels are for Colorado.... The Colorado, San Juan, and the Green rivers bring large amounts from there.


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  3. #22
    I wonder what the snotels are for Colorado.... The Colorado, San Juan, and the Green rivers bring large amounts from there.
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    It takes a lot of snow to raise the lake to HWM. It won't get even remotely close to HWM.
    Utah is a very special and unique place. There is no where else like it on earth. Please take care of it and keep the remaining wild areas in pristine condition. The world will be a better place if you do.

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  5. #23
    Lake Powell is currently projected to reach 3640' in 2017. Lake Powell reached 3621' in 2016 so the lake will raise 19' this year over last year. Full pool for Lake Powell is 3700' so it will be 60' from being full.

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  7. #24
    So...another 3-4 consecutive winters like this should get Powell somewhere close to HWM. That's kind of a tall order.

  8. #25
    7 years of drought tends to do that to your water supply. Lake Powell is doing exactly what it was designed to do. It was never intended to remain at full pool every year, much to the surprise of many. Also keep in mind there are 15 dams on the Colorado River and they are all experncing similar increases. The system was designed to store water in years of excess to supply water in years of drought.

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  10. #26
    So...another 3-4 consecutive winters like this should get Powell somewhere close to HWM.
    No. I don't remember the exact figure, but since the lake increases in area as it increases in depth, 60 feet below HWM is only a little over 1/2 full. That would take a lot of water to fill almost 1/2 the lake and more than just a few winters similar to this one.

    As far as drought goes, Shane is right that the recent droughts have taken a toll on the lake, but population growth and more water usage is also a factor.
    Utah is a very special and unique place. There is no where else like it on earth. Please take care of it and keep the remaining wild areas in pristine condition. The world will be a better place if you do.

  11. #27
    The exact number is 50% of the water in Lake Powell is stored in the top 100'. Something else to keep in mind is full pool is not the most efficient way to store water as the surface area doubles in the last 50', which means evaporation doubles.

    FWIW - It took 20 years to originally fill Lake Powell and those years averaged above average snowfall.

  12. #28
    All I know is that Lake Mead could use some more water in it. This year should help out with that but I wouldn't hold out much hope of it being anywhere near full still even with the fantastic snow we've had.

    Here's what it looked like a few weeks ago.
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  13. #29
    Lake Mead should reach 1090' in 2017. It reached 1084' feet in 2016 so that's a gain of 6'. Full pool for Lake Mead is 1229'. Theoretically it's better to store water upstream as it allows more control of how water is distributed. But ideally you will probably see them attempt to bring Powell to within about 50' of full pool and then they will attempt to bring Mead up.

  14. #30
    Quote Originally Posted by Scott P View Post
    population growth and more water usage is also a factor.
    FWIW - In the Western States over 90% of water consumption goes to agriculture. The national average is 80% goes to agriculture.

    And if you guys couldn't tell Western State water usage is kind of a hobby of mine as it's something I've always found really interesting. I've done a lot of design work on various dams, including Glen Canyon when the spillway was repaired in 1983.


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  16. #31
    Moderator jman's Avatar
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    We are starting to drop in the central part of the state. This week shows a few rain/snow storms across the state.

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    Followed by the US Drought Monitor for Utah. Utah is now 100% NOT in a drought (according to them).

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    ●Canyoneering 'Canyon Conditions' @ www.candition.com
    ●Subscribe to my friend Jeff's Youtube Channel - you can watch our adventures there.
    ●Hiking Treks (my younger brother's website): hiking guides at www.thetrekplanner.com
    "There are two ways to die in the desert - dehydration and drowning." -overhearing a Park Ranger at Capitol Reef N.P.
    "He who walks on the edge, will eventually fall."

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