Utah’s reservoirs at highest levels in 13 years as last of snowpack melts

Jun 7, 2024, 5:00 AM

Deer Creek Reservoir is pictured at Deer Creek State Park in Wallsburg on May 10. Utah's reservoir ...

Deer Creek Reservoir is pictured at Deer Creek State Park in Wallsburg on May 10. Utah's reservoir system is now up to 92% -- the highest in 13 years, according to the Natural Resources Conservation Service. (Marielle Scott, Deseret News)

(Marielle Scott, Deseret News)

SALT LAKE CITY — Utah’s reservoir system has officially reached its highest point in 13 years as the state reaches the tail end of its spring snowmelt season.

The statewide system is now up to 92% capacity, according to the Utah Division of Water Resources. It’s a level the state last reached in 2011, the Natural Resources Conservation Service pointed out in a report updating the state’s water situation ahead of the summer.

The statewide capacity is based on all of the reservoirs in Utah excluding Flaming Gorge and Lake Powell, which aren’t considered major suppliers of Utah water. Flaming Gorge is back to 84% capacity, while Lake Powell is up to 36% capacity.

City of Provo prepares for high flows at the Provo River

The Conservation Service notes that reservoir storage within the Beaver, Duchesne, Price, Provo, Southeastern Utah, Tooele Valley and Weber-Ogden watersheds are “at or close to” full capacity, which is driving the higher statewide average.

“Utah’s reservoir storage is in outstanding shape,” the report states.

The system was in a much different situation less than two years ago. It had fallen to 42% capacity in November 2022 amid a multiyear severe drought before Utah’s water fortunes changed.

Its resurgence is tied to back-to-back winters that weren’t just above average, but impacted most of the snowpack basins/watersheds in the state, said Jordan Clayton, a hydrologist for the agency and author of the report.

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Utah’s reservoirs at highest levels in 13 years as last of snowpack melts