What happened to the snow pack and run off?
May 04, 2011 | 5492 views | 0 0 comments | 115 115 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Despite the fact that year-to-date precipitation totals are close to normal levels, there has been very little runoff of water from area mountains.

“Recapture Reservoir hasn’t changed more than three inches since December,” said Ferd Johnson, who watches water use at the reservoir north of Blanding. “The snow pack is just not there.”

There was more than 16 inches of water in the snow at Camp Jackson when the snowpack peaked on March 12. It apparently soaked into the soil rather than running into area reservoirs.

The absorption, combined with heavy rains in December, leaves the ground water in good shape. There just hasn’t been significant run off.

While hesitant to tempt fate, local farmers are hopeful the winter and spring crops will turn into a good harvest.

The level of Loyds Lake has risen just two feet since the winter low. The reservoir near Monticello currently holds two thirds of its capacity.

While the snow pack has diminished, there is still a large amount of water in the mountains. However, Johnson states that irrigators are currently using water. As a result, the amount of water in local reservoirs is not likely to increase dramatically.

In contrast, the water level at Lake Powell is expected to increase significantly in May and June. The snow pack in the upper Colorado River basin is 150 percent of normal.

The weather reporting station in Monticello continues to be out of commission. National Weather Service officials are in the process of moving the station from the Monticello Port of Entry.
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