LAKE MCCLURE – This is how low the water level is at Lake McClure as you can see from this December 29th photo. In the photo is MID worker Larry Crowson Jr showing just how high he has to climb and how dangerous his job has become now that the water levels have dropped so low.
Despite the critically needed winter weather in recent weeks, it remains too early to determine potential benefit to Lake McClure or Merced Irrigation District. After four years of consecutive drought, the reservoir remains at historic lows. The reservoir fell to a record-low 6.2 percent of its capacity on February 4, 2015. As of January this year, Lake McClure remains at less than 9 percent of its capacity.
The California Department of Water Resources conducted its first winter survey on December 30, 2015 and reported an increase in snow this season compared with last year. However, there are still several months of winter ahead and it remains to be seen what type of snow and weather conditions may result. As always, MID will make all determinations about the irrigation season and projections about Lake McClure storage conditions in the springtime.