Colorado River Spring Runoff and Lake Powell Part 1

Real Estate Broker/Owner with Rankin Realty at Lake Powell, LLC

Seven of the last eight years the water flowing into Lake Powell from the Colorado River, and upper basin tributaries, has been in the state of drought. 2002 saw only 25% of average inflow in to the lake. Average is such a misleading word when used in describing events in the desert. Not much average happens here.

This year looks like, while not the end of the drought, to at least be a good water year. As of March 2, 2008 snowpack conditions above Lake Powell are at 124% of normal.

Lake Powell is a huge water storage tank. After all of these years of drought, it is low. That means the lake has been doing it’s job providing water to millions of people and agricultural uses downstream. The lake is currently 110 feet below full and is storing 45% of it’s overall capacity.

A wet spring could see an increase of 50 or more feet of water hit Lake Powell during our spring runoff time. Increase in lake elevation usually begins the end of April and winds up the first week of July. 50 feet would help the lake not only in storage capacity, but in recreational opportunities.

There are plenty of areas to “recreate” on at Lake Powell even with the lower water levels. However, tourism has been down here for several years due to a variety of reasons (another blog). The public perception that Lake Powell is empty, or gone, is but one of them. Maybe, as the lake begins to rise and with the media attention just having been focused here with the floods, we will see more tourists visiting.



Comments (2)

Sharon Paxson
Compass - Newport Beach, CA
Newport Beach Real Estate
I hope you get more tourism and I hope spring fills the lake. I think Lake Powel is beautiful - an amazing place to visit . . .
Mar 10, 2008 04:38 AM
Heather Rankin
Rankin Realty at Lake Powell, LLC - Page, AZ
Lake Powell Real Estate
Sharon ~ Yes I hope they come too. For now, most everything here is tied to tourism. The more tourists are here, the more real estate services we can provide. It never ceases to amaze me how many folks pop in the local grocery store looking for real estate information. The thing is, they have to be here first and higher lake levels mean more tourists. It's our circle of life!
Mar 10, 2008 09:24 AM