July 10, 2019
Current Koocanusa Reservoir elevation: 2434.2 feet
Current Koocanusa Reservoir inflow: ~18 kcfs
Current Libby Dam outflow: 7 kcfs
Current Kootenai River elevation at Bonners Ferry: 1746.66 feet
Current Changes and Highlights:
- Libby Dam outflow is expected to remain at 7 kcfs (minimum flows) through August.
- Due to very dry conditions, Lake Koocanusa will be significantly lower than normal this summer and is projected to peak between 2,436.5 and 2,438 feet (as of July 10 analysis).
Libby Dam releases ramped down to summer flows Tuesday night (6/25). The Libby water supply forecast for May was released on May 3rd; it was 4983 KAF (85% of average) for the Apr-Aug inflow volume. Based on this forecast, it is a Tier 2 year which sets the bull trout minimum flow to 7 kcfs. Outflows are expected to remain constant at 7 kcfs through August.
Extremely low spring precipitation combined with well below average winter snowpack and runoff will keep Lake Koocanusa significantly lower than normal this summer. Based on analysis on July 10, reservoir elevation is projected to peak between 2,436.5 to 2,438 feet – potentially as much as 18 feet below the typical targeted peak pool elevation of 2,454 feet – and expected to occur in the first two weeks of August rather than late July.
Short term forecasts for Libby Dam elevations and inflow:
Short term forecasts for Libby Dam outflow:
Additionally, projected inflows and reservoir operations at Libby Dam through the fall can be found here: