Water Outlook Great – Streams Will Be High and Dangerous

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Last week, the flat road leading to Grassy Lake still recorded nearly six feet of snow. 

By Julie Johansen

As of Tuesday, the snow pack was recorded at well over 100% of normal on all the drainages in Emery County. Muddy Creek was at 133%, Ferron recorded 141%, Huntington was at 142% and Joe’s Valley measured 141%. This means all the reservoirs will spill, so the local water boards have decided to let water out early, around the first of April, in hopes of not having too much water coming over the spillways at one time.

At the beginning of March, the projected runoff for the various watersheds included Huntington at 55,000 acre feet and Muddy Creek at 12,000 acre feet. Joe’s Valley was projected at 76,000 acre feet, while the reservoir only holds 30,000 acre feet. Ferron anticipated 48,000 acre feet, enough to fill Millsite Reservoir four times. Because of these high numbers, Jay Mark Humphrey, Emery Water Conservancy District Manager, cautioned, “The streams will be high and dangerous.”

The mitigation work done a couple of years ago around Castle Dale and Orangeville aims to help protect property during these times of high runoff. Another matter to consider is that because of weather, the construction company has not been able to complete canal work, so areas east of Center Street in Castle Dale will not be able to get secondary water until at least the first of May.

 

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