[5/10/18] Warm Weather = Fast Snow Melt = Rapid Rise For Lake Chelan

Posted in Public Utility, RecreationTagged , ,

Rapid snow melt during the past week, due to warm temperatures, has increased the runoff into Lake Chelan- though it is still within its normal operating range.

The forecast calls for continued warm temperatures- which will continue the increased runoff volumes into the lake.

Chelan County PUD Lake Level expert, John Wasniewski (woz-new-ski), says the predicted rapid lake level rise is in response to the weather…

051018 PUD Lake Level 1 :30 “…of these high inflows.”

Lake Chelan is the reservoir for the Lake Chelan Hydro Project.

The district runs the dam under a seven step federal license that says they must make every reasonable effort to maintain the reservoir at or above 1098 feet elevation from June 30 – Sept 30 each year, with several targets along the way…

051018 PUD Lake Level 2 :31 “…and the snow melt.”

John says managing the level of the lake is not an exact science, but rather, involves a series of forecasts and calculations with the added uncertainty of weather…

051018 PUD Lake Level 3 :16 “…in the near future.”

On an annual basis, an average of 2,200 cubic feet per second flow into Lake Chelan, and about 75% of the water that flows into the lake comes from two tributaries: the Stehekin River and Railroad Creek. The remaining water comes from a number of smaller tributaries along with rainfall and snow pack.

For more information on lake levels, and for the current and forecasted lake level- visit the PUD’s website at chelanpud.org.