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Great Plains Region
Billings, Mont.
Media Contact:
Paula A. Holwegner
(406) 247-7300

Released On: September 01, 2011

Reclamation Announces Reservoir Information
BILLINGS, MONT. -- "Water levels at Reclamation-managed reservoirs in Montana are well above average for this time of year and going into the Labor Day weekend," said Dan Jewell, Montana Area Office Manager. "Weather conditions this past month have been warm and dry, and most streamflows have declined to more normal flow rates. Overall, water supplies for Reclamation projects in eastern Montana are quite favorable. As always, we strongly encourage recreationists to check ahead for the most up-to-date information on reservoir status at http://www.usbr.gov/gp/lakes_reservoirs/montana_lakes.htm,” Jewell added.

Current conditions at Reclamation facilities include:

Clark Canyon Reservoir – The reservoir level is approximately 6.6 feet higher than at this time last year. Releases to the Beaverhead River are currently being maintained at 940 cubic feet per second (cfs) to slowly evacuate storage in the reservoir. The south boat ramp at Beaverhead Campground and the Marina boat ramp are both usable.

Canyon Ferry Reservoir – The reservoir level is approximately 1.1 feet higher than at this time last year. Releases from Canyon Ferry to the Missouri River are about 5,300 cfs. Boaters should be able to launch at all ramp locations during the Labor Day weekend.

Lake Elwell (Tiber Reservoir) – The reservoir level is approximately 14.5 feet higher than at this time last year. Releases to the Marias River are currently being maintained at 2,800 cfs to slowly evacuate storage in the reservoir. Boaters can launch at the VFW and Tiber Marina ramp locations during the Labor Day weekend. Recreationists who plan to use the river should use caution because of the unusually high river flows.

Milk River Project (Fresno & Nelson) – The water level in Fresno Reservoir is about 12.3 feet lower than at this time last year. Releases to the Milk River are being maintained at 680 cfs to satisfy downstream demands. The water level in Nelson Reservoir is about the same as this time last year. Boaters should be able to launch at all locations around Fresno and Nelson Reservoirs during the Labor Day weekend.

Bighorn Lake (Yellowtail Dam) – The reservoir level is approximately 9.1 feet higher than at this time last year. Releases to the Bighorn River will likely be at or near 4,000 cfs throughout the Labor Day weekend to slowly evacuate storage in Bighorn Lake. Kane boat ramp will not be accessible. Medicine Creek recreation facilities are unusable at this time. Black Canyon will be open with limited facilities due to the high waters. Boaters should be able to launch at all other ramp locations over the Labor Day weekend.

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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.