Published April 18, 2014

SANTA ROSA, N.M., -- The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Albuquerque District, will begin a routine release of water from Santa Rosa Lake and Dam starting Wednesday, April 23, 2014, at 8:00 a.m. The Bureau of Reclamation and Carlsbad Irrigation District requested a 30,000 acre-feet volume release. It is expected to last until May 4, 2014, with a peak flow rate of about 1,400 cubic feet per second (cfs).

The estimated water elevation at Santa Rosa at the start of the release is approximately 4744.35 feet. The estimated total drop in lake elevation will be 10 feet.

Santa Rosa is one of three reservoirs on the Pecos River that will be making releases for irrigation operations and for the Pecos River Settlement water for the state of Texas. The Pecos River Settlement determines how Pecos River water is divided between New Mexico and Texas. The other two dams, Sumner Lake and Dam and Brantley Dam, are owned by the Bureau of Reclamation.

Santa Rosa Dam is the first major dam along the Pecos River, and its reservoir has a 2,434 square mile contributing drainage area. The reservoir is a main component in the Pecos River Basin comprehensive plan, providing irrigation storage, flood control and sediment retention.

There will be no impact to recreation activities. Although the reservoir is a Corps' managed lake, the campgrounds and most recreation areas at Santa Rosa Lake are managed by the New Mexico State Parks Division. 

Elizabeth Lockyear

Release no. 14-002