Get breaking news alerts via email

Click here to manage your alerts
Water worries, unlike water itself, rising in southern Utah
First Published May 07 2014 03:42 pm • Last Updated May 07 2014 10:59 pm

Southern Utah continues to get the short end of the water stick.

After a strong start in the first few months of the water year (which begins Oct. 1), the state’s southern reaches have seen limited precipitation.

Join the Discussion
Post a Comment

With snowpack all but gone and stream flows likely at their highest — or already peaked — levels, wildland firefighters, livestock operators and state wildlife biologists are bracing for a long, hot summer.

The Utah Water Supply Outlook Report for April prepared by the Natural Resources Conservation Service was released Wednesday and the numbers are ominous.

• Flow figures on southwestern Utah’s Virgin River at Virgin are at 29 percent of normal and "it’s all downhill from here," reads the report.

• Snowpack figures as of May 1 are 23 percent of normal for southwest Utah; 27 percent for southeast Utah and 45 percent for south-central’s upper Sevier.

• The water left in the remaining snow in four areas has not reached into the 30 percent of normal range: Dirty Devil, 22 percent; southwestern Utah, 23 percent; southeastern Utah, 27 percent; and lower Sevier River, 29 percent.

• Precipitation since Oct. 1 is at 53 percent in southwest Utah and 67 percent in southeastern Utah.

"Northern Utah is still doing relatively well," wrote Randy Julander, Utah’s snow survey supervisor. "Conditions from Highway 6 south are deteriorating quickly. South of Interstate 70 conditions are extremely poor."

Despite the low numbers in the south, the statewide average numbers range to the more comfortable side. Snowpack across Utah was 83 percent of normal, precipitation in April was 76 percent of normal and soil moisture was at 77 percent.

story continues below
story continues below

"Water users with reservoir storage may have short supplies this year across much of the state," according to the report, "and those reliant on direct stream flow will experience shortages."


Twitter: @BrettPrettyman

Copyright 2014 The Salt Lake Tribune. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Top Reader Comments Read All Comments Post a Comment
Click here to read all comments   Click here to post a comment

About Reader Comments

Reader comments on sltrib.com are the opinions of the writer, not The Salt Lake Tribune. We will delete comments containing obscenities, personal attacks and inappropriate or offensive remarks. Flagrant or repeat violators will be banned. If you see an objectionable comment, please alert us by clicking the arrow on the upper right side of the comment and selecting "Flag comment as inappropriate". If you've recently registered with Disqus or aren't seeing your comments immediately, you may need to verify your email address. To do so, visit disqus.com/account.
See more about comments here.
Staying Connected
Contests and Promotions
  • Search Obituaries
  • Place an Obituary

  • Search Cars
  • Search Homes
  • Search Jobs
  • Search Marketplace
  • Search Legal Notices

  • Other Services
  • Advertise With Us
  • Subscribe to the Newspaper
  • Access your e-Edition
  • Frequently Asked Questions
  • Contact a newsroom staff member
  • Access the Trib Archives
  • Privacy Policy
  • Missing your paper? Need to place your paper on vacation hold? For this and any other subscription related needs, click here or call 801.204.6100.