UTAH DROUGHT

Lake Powell bounces back from record-low water levels

May 24, 2023, 4:34 PM

Lake Powell is expected to rise 70 feet this Spring, but water managers said it doesn't take away t...

Light and shadows on the canyon walls of Davis Gulch, a side canyon on the Escalante River arm of Lake Powell, are reflected in the reservoir’s waters on Friday, Oct. 7, 2022. (Credit: Spenser Heaps, Deseret News)

(Credit: Spenser Heaps, Deseret News)

SALT LAKE CITY — After hitting its lowest level on record earlier this year, Lake Powell has risen 30 feet from snow runoff and is expected to gain another 40 feet. 

Utah Chair to the Colorado River Gene Shawcroft told KSL NewsRadio the runoff from this year’s snowpack is enough to keep the lake in good standing for a couple of years. 

“If next year turns out to be an extremely dry year, there was enough water generated this year that will carry us through for a couple of years,” he said. 

That said, relying on runoff is not a long-term fix. 

Shawcroft said a proposal is in the works to lessen the amount of water diverted from the lake to the lower Colorado River basin.

Furthermore, he said people can help keep the lake at a stable water level by cutting back on their water use. 

“Because we live in a desert we ought to act like we live in a desert all the time and use our water extremely wisely. Regardless of the fact mother nature gave us a good year that should not change our long-term vision of reducing use, cutting back, and being more efficient with our water,” Shawcroft said. 

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Lake Powell bounces back from record-low water levels