Water officials: Elkhead Reservoir will spill sooner than expected | SteamboatToday.com

Water officials: Elkhead Reservoir will spill sooner than expected

Reservoir managers predict Elkhead Reservoir will overtop its spillway on Tuesday, May 2, with water exiting the spillway and outflow at a combined rate of about 2,100 cubic feet per second, similar to the peak in 2011. Shown here is an aerial photo from June 14, 2011.
Colorado River Water Conservation District/Courtesy photo

Reservoir managers expect water from Elkhead Reservoir to flow over the spillway sooner than initially projected.

Overflow is now expected on Tuesday, May 2, leading to potential streambank erosion on Elkhead Creek downstream of the reservoir.

According to the Colorado River Basin Forecast Center, as well as the Colorado River Water Conservation District, reservoir outflow is expected to increase to approximately 2,100 cubic feet per second by Tuesday.

“I suspect the driving conditions are temperature and dust on snow,” said Don Meyer, senior water resources engineer for the river district.

This year, the high flow is expected to meet or exceed the peak water flow that occurred during the soggy spring of 2011, when officials recorded a peak of 1,800 cfs on May 8 and more than 2,000 cfs on May 16, May 24 and June 4, Meyer said.

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