POSTED BY KEN CURTIS ON MAY 3, 2019
A quick update on current conditions. McPhee continues to rise over a foot per day, while diversion demands remain very low. The tremendous low snow below 9,000′ has generated most of the runoff and inflows to date, while keeping much of the irrigated lands from drying. The upper elevation snow had just started to melt when the last stormed slowed or stopped the high elevation melting, added a few more inches and practically stopped the irrigation diversions briefly.
This sunny weekend should start the melt back up, then NOAA’s CBRFC is watching a closed low for late next week that will drive the next cool off that slows the runoff. After that low, they expect increasing sun and snow melt to return.
What all this means is McPhee should be close to full the week before Memorial Day, which likely will start the 2019 “spill” (managed release).
We hope to have a clearer picture and post an update next Wednesday afternoon.
PS: For planning purposes at this stage the spill looks to last 3 -4 weeks, but we hope to clarify that next week. Although the start may vary a few days, the first half is more certain than the second.