McPhee water levels have fallen below the 2002 level

It was 16 years ago when the lake was this low. At the time that record low water level seemed insurmountable. The lake has now dropped below that historic low. The lake almost directly south of Grand Junction in southwest Colorado and the Dolores River has been hit particularly hard by the dry weather and low snowpack levels.

It's about a three and a half hour drive down to McPhee lake. It's a popular fishing and camping destination. It's the second largest lake in Colorado. There are walleye, small and largemouth bass, trout, crappie, northern pike, perch, and kokanee salmon to catch. One positive to the low water levels it will concentrate the fish into easier to find locations. However, continued low water can harm water quality.

This spring the inflow into McPhee dropped by nearly half. That's a big concern. McPhee Reservoir municipal supplies water for Cortez, Towaoc and Dove Creek. Because of the low snowpack, the runoff forecast is at 15% of the average.  Precipitation for 2018 at McPhee is the lowest it's been in 35 years.

Credit: The Journal