Despite an abnormally hot and dry summer, the Water Security Agency has noted that the levels in some of the reservoirs in the southeast are a little bit higher than necessary.
"After reaching it's full supply level following spring runoff, Rafferty is currently at about 549.62 meters, so on November first, a 1.4 cubic meter per second outflow was initiated to draw things down to the normal spring level of 549.5 prior to February 1st, 2018," shared Patrick Boyle with the WSA.
"Boundary is about 559.48 meters, which is near normal for this time of year so there's no releases planned there. Alameda is down to about 561.3 meters, and on November 1st the release from there is about 0.5 cubic meters per second outflow. That's to bring it down to the elevation we want to get to of 561.0 meters for this time of year."
He added that there are some safety concerns to keep in mind when it comes to these draw down operations.
"These releases are going to delay the development of that ice cover below the reservoirs. You might have some open water sections, and that's stuff that we want everybody to pay attention to going out this winter right now."
That said, what is the right ice thickness to support your weight and the weight of your equipment, whether its a fishing pole or a half ton?
"For a person out there it's 4 inches, a snowmobile is 8, 12 inches for a car, and a heavy truck is 12 inches or more. That's the thickness you're looking for," Boyle said.
"From our perspective, we're also advising that, if you see an area that is slushy in appearance, if it's thawed and frozen again, if you see moving water layered, sudden temperature changes, anything with structures on it such as pressure ridges, you want to avoid all of those areas. That's important to remember heading out into the winter. Take the proper precautions and be safe out there."
Looking ahead at the coming year, he noted that the major factor in determining the moisture trends will the snowfall.