Dam releases at a trickleReleases from the Jamestown and Pipestem dams are a mere trickle this winter, according to Bob Martin, dam manager for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.
By: Keith Norman, The Jamestown Sun
Releases from the Jamestown and Pipestem dams are a mere trickle this winter, according to Bob Martin, dam manager for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.“Since Nov. 1, we’ve been releasing 2 cubic feet per second out of Pipestem Dam,” he said. “There have been no releases since June 15 from Jamestown Dam.”
Martin said the releases from Pipestem Dam are matching the lakes inflows from springs and ground water keeping the lake level at about 1442.6 feet. Inflows from springs and groundwater have caused the lake at Jamestown Dam to increase a couple of inches this winter after dropping one foot due to evaporation during the late summer and fall.
While last summer’s dry conditions eliminated most of the moisture in the topsoil, Martin said the subsoil still contains a lot of water that continues to flow into streams and lakes through natural springs.
“We’ve been wet since 1993 so it will take a long time to dry out the subsoil,” he said.
In the meantime, releases will likely stay at minimal levels with no planned changes until more information develops in the spring.
“We plan on maintaining these releases until circumstances change,” Martin said. “There are still a lot of variables out there. We don’t even start making snow surveys until February.”
Sun reporter Keith Norman can be reached at
701-952-8452 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org