How's the Colorado R. watershed doing this winter?

The Sierra Nevada’s are already at 100% of average snowpack, and there is lots more to come. The Central Valley is getting soaked. But what about the other major source of water in the Southwest - the Colorado River? Is its watershed getting the amount of snowpack the rest of the West seems to be getting? Is it going to be enough to raise Lake Mead more than an inch? What say Dopers living in the watershed area?

According to this site the current snowpack is 106% of average. Of course, several months remain and it could get worse.


We’ve just had 5 inches of rain in the last 48 hours here in SoCal, so the lakes got more than an inch or rise. LA is diverting the runoff to holding areas where it will replenish the ground water. One would think the drought was over but the state is still calling this a drought.

Oh, and 2 more storms on the horizon.

just today we’ve had: Active Advisory: Flood Warning, Areal Flood Advisory, Flash Flood Watch, High Surf Warning, Beach Hazard Statement Active Notice: Record Report, Public Information Statement. Possible tornado warnings, water spout warnings and an earthquake this morning in the Banning/Beaumont area. No fires though. Nice up to 12 foot high surf though.

While recognizing that the state has a long ways to go on this, I’d still enjoy seeing a cartoon showing a newscaster at his desk, floodwaters over his head and fish swimming by, saying “Climatologists caution that the recent rains do not mean an end to the drought.”

The rain is starting to help some…

That said, Swanberg adds the lake [Folsom Lake]is still only at 25 percent capacity. “It’s kind of a good news, bad news situation,” he said. “The lake has risen 28.5 feet in the past month. However it’s still at 51 percent of average for this time of year.”

So true. :smiley:

Is that 100% of where it should be on this date, or 100% of what it should become over an entire winter?

It’s percent normal for this date, so good news but just in that we’re at average, and not yet the significantly above average figures we’ll need to feel real relief.

I’ve been wondering about this. Hope the West gets all the snow it needs - but not dangerously more - to make up for the drought.

If Folsom, Oroville, and Shasta are full before the spring melt, we may be able to declare the drought over. I know they will release water from those lakes to make room for the melt water, tho. It’s the snow that matters more than the rain in both the Sierras and the Rockies, especially late season snow. All the Sierra snow could get washed-away with one or two warm storms with snow levels above 7,000 feet - like what happened in 1997. While that may fill the reservoirs, things will still run dry by end of summer without a deep spring snowpack.

Agree, tho, no matter how much rain and snow we get, the drought will never end now. It’s like the summer fire season - each and every year, no matter what the conditions, will be the “worst fire season ever”. Either there was not enough rain so the forests are too dry. Or it was too wet and now the undergrowth is out of control and will dry-up and get torched. There is no winning.

Have you tried calling Charlie Sheen to help out?

You think he aids the situation?