Silver Lake could rise as much as 4 feet due to spring runoff

The United States Geological Survey released this photograph of the Upper Lemmon Creek drainage.
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RENO, Nev. (KOLO) - Silver Lake could rise 2.4 feet to 4 feet after snow in the mountains and hills melt, according to a United State Geological Survey report.

No estimates were released in this report for Swan Lake, which is near flooded homes and roads in Lemmon Valley.

A survey of the East Lemmon Valley drainage showed about 1,055 acres with snow on it that could melt and go into Silver Lake, the report said. At the low end, at least 1,700 acre feet of water will go into the lake, causing a 2.4-foot rise. At the high end, there could be 2,800 acre feet of water going into Silver Lake, which would lead to a 4-foot rise. The best estimate is for a 3-foot rise from 2,100 acre feet of water, the USGS said.

The reason for the increased estimates is that a previous estimate found only 5 percent of the measurements had more than 120 inches of snow but the most recent measurements found more than 120 inches of snow in more than 10 percent of the measurements.

None of these estimates account for rain and snow expected Friday and Saturday.

The report warned with clear skies and warm temperatures or warm rain the snow could melt rapidly and cause a rapid rise in water.

The ground will absorb little of the runoff because the ground is already saturated, the report said.

Typically about 3 inches of water evaporates from Silver Lake in April and 5 inches evaporates in May.