#Runoff news: Increased releases to the Big Thompson from Olympus Dam and the Fryingpan from Ruedi

From email from Reclamation (James Bishop):

Today, 14 June, releases from Olympus Dam to the Big Thompson increased from 380 to 550 cubic feet per second (cfs) and will remain at 550 cfs until further notice.

From The Rio Blanco Herald Times (Nikki Turner):

It’s going to be awhile before summer comes to the Flat Tops. According to RBC Road and Bridge Director Dave Morlan, there’s still five feet of snow at the top of Ripple Creek.

“We’re working to get those passes open,” he said during Tuesday’s commissioner meeting in Meeker. “Burro Mountain is open to the county line. There’s still about three feet at the county line with Garfield County. Trappers still has two, two and a half feet.”

From The Farmington Daily Times (Hannah Grover):

The Animas River will likely continue to flow high and fast through the upcoming days.

San Juan County Floodplain Manager Michele Truby-Tillen said the U.S. Geological Survey and the National Weather Service both project the peak of season runoff on the Animas River will occur June 15.

That means the Animas River will likely be swifter and higher than its been all year on Saturday.

Truby-Tillen said it has been a long time since there was this much water in the river. The abnormally deep snowpack in the mountains followed an extreme drought last year.

According to the USGS, the last time the Animas River had this much water in it was in June 2015 when the gauge at Cedar Hill registered 8,040 cubic feet per second…

Flows in the Animas River at Cedar Hill have been increasing. A gauge measured nearly 7,000 cubic feet per second on the morning of June 13. In a normal year, the flows would be between 2,500 cubic feet per second and 3,000 cubic feet per second in Cedar Hill, according to the USGS data.

From email from Reclamation (James Bishop):

Releases from Reudi Dam to the Fryingpan River will increase according to the following schedule:

Sunday at 6 a.m.: from 429 to 479 cubic feet per second (cfs)

Sunday at 6 p.m: from 479 to 529 cfs

Monday at 6 a.m.: from 529 to 579 cfs

Monday at 6 p.m.: from 579 to 629 cfs.

After 6 p.m. Monday, releases will remain at 629 until further notice. The purpose of these increased releases is to enhance spring peak flows in a section of the Colorado River upstream of Grand Junction, CO, critical to the survival of four endangered fish species: the humpback chub, razorback sucker, bonytail and the Colorado pikeminnow. Reudi Reservoir is one of many reservoirs participating in a large, coordinated effort to improve the habitat of these endangered native Colorado fish.

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