As expected, inflows remain fairly high, and with the lake full Reclamation will begin releasing water to evacuate storage out of the flood pool. Releases will increase to 6,000cfs by the end of the day tomorrow, and depending on how inflows look by Wednesday morning, releases could be increased even higher, possibly reaching 7,500cfs by Thursday.
Here is what is currently known:
Starting today at 4pm, releases will increase from 4,500cfs to 5,000cfs.
Tomorrow at 8am, releases will increase from 5,000cfs to 5,500cfs.
Tomorrow at 3pm, releases will increase form 5,500cfs to 6,000cfs
Note: Tomorrow’s 3pm change is required because of some concerns balancing water between the holojets and spillways.
Enjoy the great fishing and don’t miss your chance to wave goodbye to the algae!
Early reports indicate the increase in releases (currently at 4,000cfs) have made a significant improvement to the fishability of the upper river. Many of the massive floating algae beds have moved downriver, and the river bottom is start to show clear, fishable spots. Guides are already reporting increased catch rates.
Reclamation is also closely monitoring the algae situation, and measurements taken today corroborate visual evidence that the algae is starting to move out of the system.
Look for another report late tomorrow and possible through the weekend.
Enjoy the holiday!
Releases in to the Bighorn River could increase beyond 4,500cfs depending on conditions through the 4th of July. At present, flows are scheduled to rise to 4,500 on Thursday morning, and hold there through the holiday period. Most of us have our fingers crossed this will substantially flush much of the algae out of the system.
Weather forecasts for the weekend are predicted to reach well in to the 90’s, the highest yet this year, and engineers are predicting the heat will move additional high mountain snowpack. With the lake expected to fill on Saturday, this means additional water may have to be moved, and in a hurry. Initial indications are that releases could climb to 6,000cfs and possibly higher if Mother Nature expresses her sense of humor.
Watch this site and the newspapers for additional information on releases. A conference call is schedule for Monday, at which time any changes in releases will occur.
Happy Fourth of July!
With the lake less than four feet from full and increased releases from upstream reservoirs coupled with timely precipitation in the Bighorn Basin, Reclamation has decided to increase releases to the river.
Starting today at 4pm, releases will increase from approx 2,900cfs to 3,500cfs.
On Tuesday at 4pm, releases will increase from 3,500cfs to 4,000cfs
On Wednesday at 4pm, releases will increase from 4,000cfs to 4,500cfs
At this time, no releases in to the canal are planned.
Enjoy the summer weather, and be sure your friends/clients to take home their limit of algae!!
Although inflows have dropped off precipitously in the last few days, Reclamation is expecting Bighorn Lake to fill sometime around the 1st of July. Inflows are currently slightly greater than what is being released to the river and the canal. Additional increases to the river are unlikely at this point, but there could still be one or more weather event that could make things interesting. Barring that, flows should remain at 2,000cfs for the rest of the month. The next stakeholders conference call is scheduled for July 2nd.
Starting Wednesday May 1st, diversions to the Bighorn Canal will begin from the Afterbay at a release of 100 cfs. Current inflows into the reservoir are 2,110 cfs.
Use the River Status link at the top of the page to monitor the lake and status in near real-time.