Aspinall Unit operations update: Blue Mesa icing target elevation = 7490 feet

Blue Mesa Reservoir
Blue Mesa Reservoir

From email from Reclamation (Erik Knight):

Releases from Crystal Dam will be increased from 350 cfs to 650 cfs on Monday, November 17th starting at 8:00 AM. The Uncompahgre Valley Water Users Association will begin diversions of 100 cfs to the Gunnison Tunnel Monday morning in order to refill Fairview Reservoir for municipal storage. The reservoir filling is anticipated to be complete by Tuesday, November 18th, after which diversions to the Gunnison Tunnel will end. Flows in the lower Gunnison River continue to be above the baseflow target of 1050 cfs, and are expected to stay above the baseflow target for the foreseeable future.

Pursuant to the Aspinall Unit Operations Record of Decision (ROD), the baseflow target in the lower Gunnison River, as measured at the Whitewater gage, is 1050 cfs for September through December.

Currently, flows in the Gunnison River through the Black Canyon are around 350 cfs. After this release change, flows in the Gunnison River through the Black Canyon will be around 550 cfs, until the Gunnison Tunnel diversion ends, at which time the Gunnison River flows will increase to 650 cfs. This release rate will continue in order to assist meeting the end of December icing target of elevation 7490 feet in Blue Mesa Reservoir. Current flow information is obtained from provisional data that may undergo revision subsequent to review.

More Aspinall Unit coverage here.

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