Salt Lake City, Utah
Released On: May 08, 2009
Current projections are for the Yampa River to peak at about 19,500 cfs during the second week of May, and will likely be the largest to occur this season. The projected peak at Jensen, Utah, resulting from the combined flows of the Yampa River and Flaming Gorge may increase above 20,000 cfs. Green River flow levels of 15,000 cfs, measured at Jensen, Utah, have been requested by the Upper Colorado River Endangered Fish Recovery Program scientists. The current projections from the Yampa River combined with maximum powerplant capacity from Flaming Gorge will likely meet the Recovery Program requested flows.
There are critical spawning beds in the Green River downstream of the confluence of the Green River and the Yampa River. At the present time, the endangered fish are starting to spawn. By timing the high powerplant releases to match the runoff peak of the Yampa River, two critical needs will be met. First, the combined high flows of the two rivers will ensure that sediment which washes downstream will not be re-deposited on the spawning bars and second, the high flows will carry the larval razorback suckers into flooded lowlands which are historic critical nursery habitat for the fish.
The Utah Division of Wildlife Resources has been consulted concerning the impacts of the releases to the rainbow trout fishery below the dam. While the flows during this period will make fishing the river more difficult, no adverse impacts to the fishery are expected.
DOI | Recreation.gov | USA.gov
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