Water outlook

 Water outlook

As your local water provider, we have a responsibility to protect your water supply and help ensure the health, safety and economic vitality of our community. We carefully monitor several factors, including levels of  our reservoirs, snowpack and forecasted stream flow.

As of August 31, 2020

Current situation

  • In August temperatures were above average and precipitation was below average.
  • Precipitation in August was 82% of normal, at 2.74 inches.
  • Year-to-date precipitation is 8.76 inches, which is 64% of normal.
  • We currently have 2.8 years of demand in sytem-wide storage.
  • Total system storage is at 79% of capacity.
  • We currently have 235 days of demand in local storage.
  • Crystal Reservoir, on the north slope of Pikes Peak, levels are very low, as is necessary for dam maintenance.
  • Please use water wisely. 

Reservoir levels

  • Pikes Peak: 61%
    (1981 to 2010 average is 76%)
  • Rampart: 78%
    (1981 to 2010 average is 75%)
  • Local total: 72%
    (1981 to 2010 average is 75%)
  • System total: 79%
    (1981 to 2010 average is 79%)

Are there rules for watering in Colorado Springs?

Yes, we have Water-wise Rules. The six key things you should know are:

1. You may water up to three days a week. You choose the days.
2. From May 1 to Oct. 15, run sprinklers before 10 a.m. or after 6 p.m.
3. Do not let water pool or flow across the ground.
4. Repair leaking sprinkler systems within 10 days.
5. Always use a shut-off nozzle when washing vehicles and equipment with a hose.
6. Only use water for cleaning outdoor surfaces, like driveways and sidewalks, to protect public health/safety.

How does Colorado Springs Utilities determine that we are in are in a drought?
There are a variety of factors used to determine when we are in a drought including: long range forecasts, storage levels, snowpack, operational constraints, soil moisture and others. If total system storage is projected to be below 1.5 years of demand in storage on April 1 then the results are reported to the City Council with a recommendation for implementation of water shortage response measures.


(Click here for more Drought Monitor information from NOAA.)