The Wyoming Area Office of the Bureau of Reclamation in Mills, Wyoming, has prepared snowmelt runoff forecasts for the North Platte River Basin, according to John H. Lawson, Wyoming Area Manager. The May 1 forecast of the spring snowmelt runoff is below normal for the North Platte River Basin. Total expected April through July runoff in the North Platte Basin above Glendo Dam is expected to be 340,000 acre feet (AF) or 37% of the 30 year average of 926,500 AF. Approximately 260,000 AF (36% of average) of the runoff is expected to enter Seminoe Reservoir (of which 62,000 AF was received in April), with an additional 55,000 AF (84% of average) being provided to Pathfinder Reservoir from the Sweetwater River (of which 11,000 AF was received in April), and the balance of 25,000 AF (19% of average) coming from the basin between Pathfinder Reservoir and Glendo Reservoir (of which 14,000 AF was received in April).
The water in storage for delivery to North Platte Project contractors is 377,691 AF or 50% of average. The Bureau of Reclamation is advising North Platte Project water users that an allocation of the water supply is expected, because with the current forecast only about 57% of the irrigation demands will be met. With reservoir storage well below average and below average inflow forecasted for April through July of this year, water users will need to take measures to conserve the available water supply.
Reclamation is the largest wholesale water supplier and the second largest producer of hydroelectric power in the United States, with operations and facilities in the 17 Western States. Its facilities also provide substantial flood control, recreation, and fish and wildlife benefits. Visit our website at www.usbr.gov