National Weather Service United States Department of Commerce


Spring snowmelt and runoff has started in south-central Colorado.  A first wave has passed through the San Luis Valley and more is expected. Waters have been rising in the Arkansas basin but that snowmelt usually peaks later in May or even well into June on the main stem of the river.

This year’s heavy snowpack is likely to produce higher-than-normal water in lakes and streams across south-central and southeast Colorado. While these waters are a boon to farmers and communities across the state, they can create hazardous conditions along our streams and rivers.

Water is an enormously powerful force. Use extreme caution when near rivers and streams that are running high. Rivers do not have to be flooding to be dangerous. Stream banks can erode and become unstable. Rapidly flowing water can knock you off your feet.

Stay away from rivers and streams during the snowmelt. If you must be near them, wear a life jacket.

Do not drive into floodwaters. Half of all drownings in the United States are in vehicles. Turn Around. Don’t Drown.