Restart of Power Plant Might Create Unsafe Ice at Twin Lakes

Media Contact: Kara Lamb, (970) 962-4326

For Release: February 24, 2014

TWIN LAKES, Colo. -- Hydro-power generation will restart at the Mt. Elbert Power Plant the first week of March. Water entering the power plant from the Mt. Elbert Forebay and water exiting the plant into Twin Lakes might create unsafe conditions for winter activities like ice-fishing.

"Our concern is that once we start operating the power plant, ice in the Forebay up above and ice right below the plant in Twin Lakes might become unstable," said Mt. Elbert Power Plant manager, Scott Wik. Both locations are popular for ice fishing during winter months.

Most years, there are open water conditions above and below the power plant throughout the winter season. This year, a combination of sub-zero temperatures and the plant going off-line for maintenance in mid-December made it possible for the water to freeze over.

The Mt. Elbert Power Plant is the largest hydro-electric power plant in the state of Colorado. It is located on Twin Lakes, just east of Independence Pass, and is part of the federal Fryingpan-Arkansas water project.

For more information about the Mt. Elbert Power Plant, please contact Kara Lamb at (970) 962-4326 or

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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 and follow us on Twitter @USBR.

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