3 straight days of rain boost Yampa’s flows in Steamboat
July 17, 2012
Steamboat Springs — Buoyed by three straight days of measurable rainfall, the Yampa River was flowing at 107 cubic feet per second Tuesday morning, the highest flow since July 7 and enough to support tubing.
Steamboat Springs weather observer Art Judson measured 0.13 inches of rain at 7 a.m. Tuesday at his station on an elevated bench between downtown and the ski mountain. Add that precipitation to the 0.29 inches he recorded Sunday morning and another 0.08 inches recorded Monday morning, and the unofficial three-day precipitation total is a tidy half-inch.
Despite the precipitation, Tuesday's streamflow in the town stretch of the Yampa is just half of the average for the date.
The ominous dark clouds that scuttled around rural Steamboat the past three days likely produced more rain in some locations than Judson experienced at his weather station.
A National Weather Service remote-automated weather station called Porcupine about 20 miles south of Steamboat recorded 0.21 inches of rain Sunday morning, none Monday morning and 0.84 inches Tuesday morning.
Some of those precipitation amounts likely were reflected at Stagecoach Reservoir. The inflow at the reservoir was 113 cfs, and the dam release was 66 cfs Monday morning.
Another weather station 5.5 miles east of Oak Creek recorded 0.31 inches of precipitation Tuesday morning, and another station 2.4 miles south of Steamboat recorded 0.2 inches.
Just above the Steamboat town stretch of the Yampa and the official measuring station at the Fifth Street Bridge, Fish Creek was contributing 12 cfs to the river.
The weather pattern that has brought moisture to the area is set to change Wednesday as high pressure ushers in a six-day period of mostly sunny skies and high temperatures in the upper 80s and low 90s, according to the National Weather Service in Grand Junction.
To reach Tom Ross, call 970-871-4205 or email tross@SteamboatToday.com