McPhee Reservoir

September 21, 2015--State agrees to improve flows on Lower Dolores (Durango Herald)

Colorado’s top water board agreed Tuesday to improve flows on the Lower Dolores River to boost the health of the river and its native fish. The Colorado Water Conservation Board will seek an in-stream flow right of up to 900 cubic feet per second on the Lower Dolores below its confluence with the San Miguel River. In-stream flows are designated by the board to preserve an

September 9, 2015--Dolores Water Conservancy seeks mill levy (Dolores Star)

The Dolores Water Conservancy District board of directors is asking voters to set a permanent mill levy for the district. Ballot question 4A will appear on the November general election ballot, and would authorize DWCD to fix its operating mill levy at the current 0.483 mills and retain any additional income it receives. DWCD operates McPhee Reservoir and the Dolores Project.

Rain on Snow Brings Much-Needed Flush to Florida River!

Thirteen years ago, in June 2002, the Missionary Ridge Fire in southwest Colorado burned for 39 days and consumed nearly 73,000 acres, including 56 homes. One firefighter lost his life. The skies were dark and thick with smoke, and in the aftermath, there was debris, mud, soot, and trees strewn in the river channel below Lemon Dam. Thanks to the heavy May precipitation this year, John Ey, Lemon Dam Superintendent, was able to make high releases from the reservoir and flush the Florida River channel. This provided a much-needed cleansing to the river, which had been unable to be accomplished in recent years due to prolonged drought conditions that have occurred since the 2002 fire. The extended high releases will provide numerous benefits to the river and ecosystem. Benefits include improved aquatic food base and spawning habitat, riverside vegetation, and wildlife habitat.

June 20, 2015--Dolores corridor (Cortez Journal)

A diverse advisory committee of stakeholders in the Dolores River landscape has, since 2010, been crafting proposed legislation to ensconce the lower Dolores from below McPhee Dam to Bedrock as a national conservation area – a management tool that allows for significant local input on how the resources are used.

June 10, 2015--May rains boost water outlook (Mancos Times)

The rains of May have continued into June and drastically improved irrigation supply in McPhee Reservoir. Low winter snowpack had led forecasters to believe that the reservoir would not fill enough for a full irrigation supply. In early May, farmers were told they would receive just 10 inches per acre, less than half their full allocation of 22 inches. But record rain and snow in

March 1, 2015--McPhee Reservoir at risk of mussel invasion (Associated Press)

The non-native quagga and zebra mussels are wreaking havoc on reservoirs in California, Arizona, and Nevada, clogging reservoirs and substantially increasing maintenance costs. Larvae can survive in water on boats that then infect other lakes. Annual tests show McPhee has tested negative so far for the mussels. According to the Cortez Journal, concerns rose after the U.S.

February 13, 2015--Proposal for Lower Dolores criticized (Cortez Journal)

The Montezuma County commission and San Juan Basin Farm Bureau have publicly come out against a fledgling proposal to create a National Conservation Area on the Lower Dolores River. Citing concerns that the designation could result in additional water being released downstream from McPhee Reservoir, the commissioners voted 3-0 to oppose any such plan.

January 14, 2015--McPhee at risk for invasive species (Dolores Star)

Colorado Parks and Wildlife, the U.S. Forest Service, the Dolores Water Conservancy District, and local municipalities all have a common enemy - the invasive zebra and quagga mussel species.

January 3, 2015--McPhee management comes with a price (Cortez Journal)

The costs of maintaining recreation facilities at McPhee reservoir are significant, a burden Montezuma County would inherit if it gains ownership, according to a report from the U.S. Forest Service.

Cortez: McPhee Reservoir

Montezuma County is interested in taking over recreation management of McPhee Reservoir. Frustrated by the lack of services, County Commissioners urged San Juan National Forest supervisor Kara Chadwick to convey land and management of three key facilities (McPhee boat ramp, House Creek, and Sage Hen areas) of the reservoir. “In the last 15 years, services have digressed at the lake to near nothing, so it behooves us to look at taking over management,” said Commissioner Keenan Ertel.

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