08' - 09' GSL Water Report

Water Watch Report for the 2008 - 2009 Season
Great Salt Lake
Maximum Gust for 2009 so far: 89mph on August 6th
Maximum Gust for 2008: 78mph
Maximum Gust for 2007: 104mph
Current Conditions
Lake Level as of October 1st, 2009 4194.4'
Lake Level on October 1st, 2008 4194.1'
Net Gain in one year .3'
Precip. % of Normal for Water Year 104%
Precip. % of Normal Since Jan 1. 107%


2009 Precipitation Report
Monthly Summary Normal Current Percent Summary
October 1.57" 1.29" 82% A little warm and fairly dry
November 1.4" 1.5" 107% Positive Month. 107% of our November Goal.  Weak on snowpack though. November/December was 94% of normal
December 1.23"  1.30"  109% Positive month.  109% of or December goal. 
January 1.37"  2.14  156% January was great!


 0.83  62% ** See Not Below.  These numbers reflect a poor February but it actually ended normal for the GSL Basin area
March 1.91" 1.6  84% March made up for a weak February
April 2.02"  2.52 124%  April Delivered!
May 2.09"  1.36  67% Bad Month!
June .77"  2.64 362% Massive June!
July .72"  .28 39%   Bad month
August .76"  .40  77% Weak month
September 1.33"  1.19 89%   Very week month with a very strong last day.
Annual 16.5" 17.19" 104% We had a good water year

 **  The figures above are based on measurements at the Salt Lake International Airport and reflect, to the best of our ability, direct precipitation into the Great Salt Lake.

Precipitation Summary for the Calendar Year
Normal Annual Precipitation for the Calendar Year (Oct-Sept) 16.5"
How Much Precipitation have we Had So Far (Oct-Sept) 17.19"
What Percent of Annual Precipitation Do We Have For The Year 104%
How Much More Do We Need for a Normal Year We finished over by .69'


Precipitation Summary for the Water Year (Oct-May)
Normal Water Year Precipitation 13.02"
How Much Precipitation did we get? 12.68"
What Percent of Annual Precipitation did we get for the year? 97%
What was our deficit? 0.34"


A Normal Water Year in Short

In a normal year Great Salt Lake will rise two feet during the spring runoff and then loose two feet during the summer evaporation season.

This cycle begins in October when the first snow falls begin to hit the Wasatch and north facing Uintah Mountains.  These two mountain ranges is what provides us with our spring water.

As the snow begins to fall evaporation begins to radically slown down in October.  And then usually mid November the lake begins to creap up slowly with direct precipitation and a lack of evaporation.  This cycle continues until early March.  This usually starts the runoff season for Great Salt Lake.

The lake will rapidly rise beginning March through May.  By the end of May, even though runoff is still coming down, evaporation can mitigate its effect.

By mid June runoff tapers and evaporation takes hold.  The lake slowly begins its drop.  By July and through August, it is in full retreat.  Until it starts to taper in September and only dribbles through October.


Our Water Year This Year

We had a good year.  Although we only came up a net .3' feet between October '08 and October '09,  We had less evaporation days.  We had more precipitation days (boy, that wasn't hard to do compared to 2008).  And, instead of only 62% of direct precipitation, we ended up with 104%.

For the first time in nine years, the whole Great Salt Lake Drainage area was no longer in a drought.  We weren't even dryer than normal.

On top of that, ground water and reservoir levels were replenished and are in great shape for the 2010' season.