Colorado-Big Thompson Project update: Making room for runoff

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From email from Reclamation (Kara Lamb):

The end of this week brought some visible changes to the east side of the Colorado-Big Thompson Project. As most of you have probably already noted, we are preparing for a significant run-off season, when mountain snow melt comes down, increasing flows in rivers and streams. Additionally, some other changes are also going on.

Most importantly, Northern Water, the entity representing the water users for whom the C-BT was originally built, has declared the availability of non-charge water. As a result, yesterday May 5, releases from Carter and Horsetooth Reservoirs went up. Carter is currently releasing around 600 cfs. Horsetooth is releasing upwards of 1300 cfs. Most of that is through Horsetooth Dam, but about 55 cfs is being released for municipal use through Soldier Canyon Dam.

Tomorrow morning two more changes will occur. We will turn off the pump to Carter Lake first thing in the morning, around 7 a.m. Also about that same time, we will increase the release of water to the Big Thompson Canyon at the canyon mouth, right above the Dam Store. We have been releasing just under 200 cfs through today. Tomorrow morning, that release will jump to about 520 cfs. This water is also being released as part of the declared non-charge program. This will make for quite an impressive view from the Dam Store’s upper deck.

More Colorado-Big Thompson Project coverage here.

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