A Review of the 2007 Water Year in Colorado

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1 A Review of the 2007 Water Year in Colorado Nolan Doesken Colorado Climate Center, CSU Mike Gillespie Snow Survey Division, USDA, NRCS Presented at the 28 th Annual AGU Hydrology Days, March 26, 2008, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, CO (Prepared by Odie Bliss)

2 Where did it all start? 2006 Water Year Precipitation 2

3 Drought Monitor 3

4 Highlights of the 2007 Water Year in Colorado Photo courtesy Rich Keen, Coal Creek Canyon, December

5 WY 2007 Summary Wet October 2006 December 2006 Snowstorms Persisting snowcover and cold (Eastern Plains) Holly tornado March 28, 2007 Early snowmelt and dry May 2007 Hot summer with spotty storms September rains especially West Slope 5

6 Colorado Snowcover As of January 7,

7 Colorado Snowcover As of February 15,

8 Water in the Snowpack during early February and the Total Precipitation for the months of December and January Yellow - water equivalent measured by coring/melting as reported by Cooperative Observers Light Blue - water equivalent measured by coring/weighing as reported by NWS employees Boxed - total precipitation for December and January as reported by Cooperative Observers 8

9 A Very Bad Day Holly Tornado March 28,

10 WY2007 Temperature Summary Cold October 2006 across the state November/December above or near average January and February cold, especially Eastern Plains (near -10 deg F departure) March above average statewide April 2007 cold Eastern Plains, average Foothills, warmer Mountains and Western Valleys Near average all across the state for May Above average temperatures for June through September for most of the state 10

11 Water Year 2007 temperature departures from average 8.0 Water Year 2007 Temperature Departures Temperature Departure (deg F) Oct Nov Dec Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Eastern Plains Foothills Mountains Western Valleys 11

12 Water Year Winter (Dec Feb) Statewide Temperature History 12

13 2007 Water Year Temperatures for Colorado Most recent 12-month period (Oct 2006 Sep 2007) (Period of record ) 13

14 Colorado Snowpack for 2007 Good Start, Early Finish COLORADO SNOWPACK Summary for 2007 USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service JANUARY FEBRUARY MARCH APRIL MAY JUNE % OF AVERAGE Gunnison Colorado S. Platte N. Platte Yampa-White Arkansas Rio Grande San Juan* State *Includes Animas, Dolores, San Miguel Basins

15 Wolf Creek Summit Snotel 60 SNOW WATER EQUIV. PRECIPITATION AVEAGE SWE AVERAGE PRECIP. Inches of Water Wolf Creek Summit SNOTEL Water Year OCT NOV DEC JAN FEB MAR APR MAY JUN JUL AUG SEP 15

16 Mesa Lakes Snotel SNOW WATER EQUIV. PRECIPITATION AVERAGE SWE AVERAGE PRECIP. Mesa Lakes SNOTEL Inches of Water Water Year OCT NOV DEC JAN FEB MAR APR MAY JUN JUL AUG SEP 16

17 Hoosier Pass Snotel Inches of Water SNOW WATER EQUIV. PRECIPITATION AVERAGE SWE AVERAGE PRECIP. Hoosier Pass SNOTEL Water Year OCT NOV DEC JAN FEB MAR APR MAY JUN JUL AUG SEP

18 Berthoud Summit Snotel 45 SNOW WATER EQUIV. PRECIPITATION AVERAGE SWE AVERAGE PRECIP Berthoud Summit SNOTEL Inches of Water Water Year OCT OCT NOV DEC JAN FEB MAR APR MAY JUN JUL AUG SEP 18

19 Joe Wright Snotel SNOW WATER EQUIV. PRECIPITATION AVERAGE SWE AVERAGE PRECIP. Inches of Water Joe Wright SNOTEL Water Year OCT NOV DEC JAN FEB MAR APR MAY JUN JUL AUG SEP

20 April 1 Snowpack

21 April 1 Snowpack History APRIL 1 SNOWPACK COLORADO STATEWIDE Percent of Average Year

22 Winter (Oct 2006 Apr 2007) % of Average 22

23 Summer 2007 (May Sep) precipitation as a percent of average (Prism) 23

24 Daily Precipitation Accumulation Summer 2007 (May-September) for Community Collaborative Rain, Hail and Snow Network (CoCoRaHS) Precipitation (inches) CoCoRAHS Accumulated Precipitation for Summer (May-Sep) by County Baca County Fremont County Park County Montezuma County Weld County Phillips County 2 0 5/1/2007 6/1/2007 7/2/2007 8/2/2007 9/2/

25 Water Year 2007 precipitation as a percent of average (Prism) 25

26 Colorado Precipitation in Historic Perspective Most recent 12-month period (Oct 2006 Sep 2007) (Period of record ) 26

27 27

28 Animas River Streamflow Animas River at Durango, CO 2007 Discharge Mean Discharge Discharge, (1000 CFS) OCT NOV DEC JAN FEB MAR APR MAY JUN JUL AUG SEP

29 Colorado River Streamflow 10,000 9,000 8,000 Colorado River near Dotsero, CO 2007 Discharge Mean Discharge Discharge (1000 CFS) 7,000 6,000 5,000 4,000 3,000 2,000 1,000 0 OCT NOV DEC JAN FEB MAR APR MAY JUN JUL AUG SEP

30 Cache La Poudre River Streamflow 3000 Cache La Poudre River at Mouth of Canyon 2500 Mean Discharge 2007 Discharge Discharge, (1000 CFS) OCT NOV DEC JAN FEB MAR APR MAY JUN JUL AUG SEP

31 Poudre Streamflow vs. Average Streamflow vs. Average Average Acre Feet (Thousands) Rio Grande Purgatoire Eagle Taylor Animas Yampa

32 2007 Reservoir Storage Summary Reservoir storage improved across the state even with lack of snowpack and runoff Volumes tracked above average for most of the year in Gunnison, Colorado and San Juan/Animas/Dolores and San Miguel basins Storage statewide declined to 98% of average on September 30

33 Reservoir Storage by Basin, Oct 1, October 1, Percent of Average Statewide Gunnison Colorado South Platte Arkansas Rio Grande San Juan* *includes the Animas and Dolores basins

34 Colorado Reservoir Storage Levels Colorado Statewide Reservoir Levels on October 1st for Years Percent of Average Oct Oct Oct Oct Oct Oct Oct Oct Oct Oct Oct

35 CoCoRaHS Community Collaborative Rain Hail and Snow: We re looking for more volunteers!

36 CoCo RaHS Daily Highlights 2007 Water Year October 26,

37 October 27,

38 December 21,

39 April 24,

40 April 25,

41 June 12,

42 June 13,

43 July 20,

44 August 3,

45 September 23,

46 September 24, 2007

47 Natural Resources Conservation Service Snow Survey Office Access to snowpack, precipitation, reservoir data and streamflow forecast information available at:

48 Colorado Climate Center Colorado State University Data and Power Point Presentations available for downloading click on Drought then click on Presentations

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