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Front Page » April 12, 2005 » Local News » Good-bye Drought? More Water Ahead
Published 3,429 days ago

Good-bye Drought? More Water Ahead


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By PATSY STODDARD
Editor

Water forecast for 2005

Millsite Reservoir is projected to fill and spill this spring.

With winter finally over, it appears that the drought has ended and water supplies will return to normal. This news puts smiles on the faces of water suppliers and users throughout the county.

The amount of surface runoff into our streams and reservoirs is expected to be much better than it has for the past several years. In fact, the predictions for the stream flow forecasts are close to average or above average. The following figures are from the National Resource Conservation Service.

Streamflow forecast as of March 3: Huntington Creek, 46,000 acre feet (92 percent of average); Joe's Valley Reservoir, inflow 57,000 acre feet (98 percent of average); Ferron Creek, 41,000 acre feet (105 percent of average); and Muddy Creek, 21,000 acre feet (106 percent of average). The average is computed for the 1971-2000 base period of time and is for the April through July flows.

Snow and water data.

The snow and precipitation data is obtained from the NCRS internet website as of April 11. Overall, the SNOTEL sites are at 112 percent for the snow water equivalent and 121 percent for the total precipitation. The individual figures for the SNOTEL sites are as follows:

SiteCurrentAverage% of Average% of Average
Seeley Creek18.615.9117116
Buck Flat21.119.0111115
Red Pine Ridge18.217.2106126
Mammoth-Cottonwood21.720.4106116
White River16.312.9126135
Dill's Camp18.114.1128108
Above average snow totals will help to bring the water situation back to normal. Huntington Lake shows above average snowfall.

All of these figures mean that since Oct. 1. 2004, we have received more precipitation than normal and we have more snowpack than normal. All the reservoirs (except Electric Lake) are expected to fill and overflow.

The District Manager of the Castle Valley Special Service District, Darrel Leamaster, reports that with normal to above normal stream flow predictions that they will remove all of the restrictions on the secondary irrigation systems that have been in effect for the past five years. None of the cities will be on turns. However, it is recommended that the lawns and gardens are not watered during the hot daylight hours from 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Watering during these hot daylight hours is very inefficient and results in unnecessary water wasting.

Secondary water users are also reminded that it is against the city ordinances to allow waste water to run off of your property. Also, it is against the law to allow any kind of a connection to occur between secondary irrigation systems and the drinking water system. Absolutely no connection of any kind is allowed between the two systems.

"All in all, it is a happy day that we finally have enough water to get us back to normal. Hopefully, this signals the end of our long-term drought," said Leamaster.


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