SLCESGNM Apr, 2023
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FGUS65 KSTR 072022
TTAA00 KSLR DDHHMM
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE
COLORADO BASIN RIVER FORECAST CENTER
SALT LAKE CITY, UT
SPRING FLOOD POTENTIAL
FOR THE COLORADO RIVER BASIN WITHIN COLORADO
APRIL 7, 2023
The 2023 spring runoff flood potential due to snowmelt is high at
this time for the San Juan river basin due to much above normal
snowpack. It should be emphasized that snow typically accumulates into
April,therefore conditions may change before the runoff begins.
Currently, the following sites are forecast to have mean daily peak flows
at or above the defined flood flow at the given exceedance level:
Segment Threshold Exceedance Value
------- -------- -------------
San Juan-Pagosa Springs Bankfull 90
Animas-Durango Bankfull 25
Animas-Farmington Flood 10
Mancos-Mancos Bankfull 90
Specific forecast procedures and flood flow levels do not exist for all streams.
Areas that typically experience high water in normal or above
normal snow years will be susceptible during peak runoff this year. Instantaneous
peaks can be higher than mean daily peaks, especially in headwater basins.
Precipitation in the San Juan River basin was much above average for the month
of March and is also above average for the water year. April 1 snow water
equivalent is much above median with many basins having record or near record
snow conditions. Temperatures have remained below normal limiting any significant
snowmelt which has resulted in much above normal snow conditions at all elevations.
PRECIPITATION (% OF AVERAGE) AND SNOWPACK (% OF MEDIAN):
SUBBASIN MAR PRECIP OCT-MAR PREC APR 1 SNOWPACK
---------------------- ---------- ------------ ---------------
ABOVE NAVAJO RES 230 140 185
ANIMAS 225 145 205
Spring temperatures and rain events greatly affect the pattern of snowmelt
runoff and consequently the magnitude of peak flows. It is important to keep in
mind that an extended period of much above normal temperatures or heavy rainfall
during the melt period can cause or exacerbate flooding problems in any year.
A list of specific spring peak flow forecasts is available at:
A map of the current spring peak flow forecasts is available at:
The spring runoff flood potential will be re-evaulated in mid April and
an updated product will be issued at that time.