Projected Bullfrog North Ramp Closure Date

John P Funk

Escalante-Class Member
Based on current rate of decline(-.13ft/day), Bullfrog North Ramp(Executive) will end use for houseboats(3529' elevation) in 23 days(September 22).
Smaller boats will be able to continue to 3525' elevation, which will be reached in 54 days(October 23). The rate of decline is based on the last two weeks of measurements(from water database). Obviously, storms can change the average decline, but it should be fairly accurate. This is informational only and I would appreciate not being held liable, as NPS may change the plan at any time.
 

JFRCalifornia

Keeper of San Juan Secrets
That may turn out to be the case, but USBR's latest projections published a couple weeks ago predict this, based on both projected inflows and outflows:

Aug 31 - 3531.13
Sep 30 - 3528.64
Oct 31- 3527.80
Nov 30 - 3525.69
Dec 31 - 3521.84

As a check to all this, the lake level on August 29 was 3532.10. In other words, just a bit higher than projected, likely because it didn't predict the recent monsoon storms' positive effect on the lake. So if I believe the USBR, we don't hit 3525 until the beginning of December. And that sounds about right to me...
 

John P Funk

Escalante-Class Member
I hope you're right JFR, I prefer to make plans on existing data rather than projections. I will update this thread occasionally to track it's accuracy. It will be interesting to see if BOR's "projections" match reality.
 

nzaugg

Well-Known Member
BOR's worst and best case scenarios are within a very tight band under the latest projections, leading me to believe they know exactly what value they are managing the level to hit and aren't expecting inflow any different than the current base flow.
 

svivian

Well-Known Member
That is great news! Let me know when you have solid dates. I will be heading down around then water permitting.
Its on the books for that weekend. We do an annual trip every year where we take college kids scuba and freediving as well as exploring canyons. Most of them its usually their first time to powell.
 

Dougie

Well-Known Member
Scheduled releases from the dam will drop 20% in Sept from the releases that occurred during August. Weekday releases in August were above 12,000 MAF, but dropped to only 9,500 on weekends (not sure why they chose to do that). Then the release volumes will drop 10% further in October from September. So unless BOR makes an abrupt change, the rate of decline may actually SLOW starting Thursday 9/1. Watch the daily water level table to see what verifies.
 

CSU376

Active Member
Won't they just dump another half million AF from Flaming Gorge to keep things rolling?
They can't rely on Flaming Gorge forever, just saw this article which says they can only make those releases two more times at the current status of everything. If the release from Powell is 10,000 cfs, that's about 20,000 acre-feet per day, so 500,000 acre-feet would buy about 25 days (obviously 10000 cfs release is a general ballpark assumption, I'm sure others with more involvement of the data can be more precise with the estimate). So, Flaming Gorge can buy about another 50 days, then things would get really interesting.

 
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John P Funk

Escalante-Class Member
BOR finally updated their database, so it's time for an update: Current rate of decline(2 week average) is -.16 ft/day.
Projected ramp closure for houseboats(3529'MSL)=12 days(September 18)
Projected ramp closure for smaller boats(3525'MSL)=37 days(October 13)
Powell Releases have been reduced, but inflow has also receded to match as a result of drier weather.
 

airford1

Well-Known Member
They can't rely on Flaming Gorge forever, just saw this article which says they can only make those releases two more times at the current status of everything. If the release from Powell is 10,000 cfs, that's about 20,000 acre-feet per day, so 500,000 acre-feet would buy about 25 days (obviously 10000 cfs release is a general ballpark assumption, I'm sure others with more involvement of the data can be more precise with the estimate). So, Flaming Gorge can buy about another 50 days, then things would get really interesting.

At some point the Lower Colorado water user will need to take their share of the pain, they cant expect the upper basin to bail them out forever.
 

nzaugg

Well-Known Member
I still think your projections are drastically moving up the date for 3525'. I think the 3529' value is close, but the 3525' threshold is going to be much further out since BOR is clearly going to slow the flow after the lake passes 3530' based on their monthly projections. My guess is they will hit it after November.
 

John P Funk

Escalante-Class Member
Normal Database hasn't updated since the 11th. I pulled data from another site that has level at 3529.76. I extrapolated the last two days declines to calculate the current rate of decline(14 day average) at -.152 ft/day(a slight decline from .16ft/day). Using this new data it looks like houseboat usage will end in 5 days(9/19/22). 3525' will be reached in 31 days(10/15/22).
 
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