From November 18-23, 2012, the Department of Interior will conduct the first High Flow Experiment under a multi-year High Flow Protocol announced earlier this year by Secretary Salazar. Under this Protocol, high flow releases are linked to sediment input and other resource conditions below Glen Canyon Dam.
Beginning on the evening of November 18th, releases from Glen Canyon Dam will begin ramping up to full power plant capacity (approximately 27,300 cfs). At midday on November 19th, bypass tubes at Glen Canyon Dam will be opened and releases will continue to increase up to full power plant and bypass capacity (approximately 42,300 cfs) by the evening of November 19th. Releases will be maintained at peak release for 24 hours and then begin ramping back down. Releases will return to normal operations in the evening of November 23rd. The entire experiment, including ramping is expected to last 5 days, with 24 hours at peak release. November releases from Glen Canyon Dam prior to and after the High Flow Experiment are expected to fluctuate between 7,000cfs and 9,000cfs. The elevation of Lake Powell is expected to decrease approximately 2 ½ feet during the 5-day experiment.
I’m Anne Castle, Assistant Secretary of the Interior for Water and Science. As the Assistant Secretary for the past three years, I’ve had the privilege of overseeing the Bureau of Reclamation and the U.S. Geological Survey. I also serve as the chair of the Glen Canyon Dam Adaptive Management Work Group. The Adaptive Management Program for the Glen Canyon Dam was established in 1996. Continue reading Lake Powell Water Level to Drop 2.5 feet→
A recent Facebook post from a friend of mine asking to identify a spider in Illinois reminded me of this time I brought in a Desert Sunflower with a stowaway. In Greenehaven, AZ back in 1997, from the desert behind the house down to Lake Powell was a blooming sea of yellow Desert Sunflower and orange Globe Mallow. I had snipped a couple flowers to display inside and later that day noticed a very well camouflaged spider.
The Flower Crab Spider has the ability to change color by secreting a liquid yellow pigment into the outer cell layer of the body. The spider itself is normally white. My friend had also brought in a Flower Crab Spider on some white flowers. This species habitat actually spans the entire Northern Hemisphere! The Desert Sunflower, however, is native to the Southwest.
Soon I was rewarded with the most wonderful soft sunset glow, very much amplifying the red rocks in the clouds, the sun’s colors in the snow and really making the the saturated clouds and water pop. It was interesting how the sun-lit, warm faces started to lose their snowy highlights and the cooler shaded sides kept theirs and added a lot of detail to the other side.
With huge vistas of Northern Arizona and Southern Utah I could easily see some continued snowfall and clouds many miles up lake.
It certainly was fantastic to see the newly white beaches and although as relatively rare snowfall is in the area to the rest of the country, it served to remind me how snow, ice, freeze-thaw and water just like this have shaped and formed this landscape over millions of years.
Although my previous photograph was shot from my backyard in Greenehaven, the next time it snowed I needed to get more visual interest in my photographs. So I ran down to Wahweap to get closer to the water.
It was a race to catch the snow, the clouds and the sun in perfect balance before time got the best of me and the landscape returned to normal. But with such dramatic (and changing) weather, even a pull off along the entrance to Wahweap looks magical.
I wanted to show that some lucky houseboaters were in the magic as it happened so I composed this photo with some of the houseboats moored at the marina and a rental houseboat coming in. Perhaps not visually the most dramatic for a landscape, but a fun memory.
The light got more dramatic and I made great use of my telephoto to capture some warm glow on the mesa across the lake, but you’ll have to check back later for that post!