Thursday, October 05, 2006

Lake Update

Last weekend saw us doing the grand tour of New Mexico lakes, with visits to Cochiti, Heron, and Elephant Butte Lakes.

At Cochiti I helped set up some Lasers for the "Mustang Navy", then returned later in the day to watch the West Mesa and Los Alamos high school cadets finish sailing. They were assisted during the day by several sailing club members. At Heron, I visited the marina and we did some maintenance on our MacGregor. At Elephant Butte on Sunday, we sailed on Carol Anne's Etchells ... until shortly after the floorboards caved in and collapsed! Then we hitched a ride on USA 38, Constellation, still managing to get in about five hours of sailing between the two boats.

Now, we're learning all about one-design rules and construction methods for re-doing the floor supports and floorboards. Rebuilding part of a boat in a state that is 800 miles from the nearest coast and the nearest Etchells fleet, and with minimal sailing infrastructure, gets to be one of those, "Oh no, not another learning experience!" occasions. The challenge is to make the floor system conform to Etchells class one-design rules, while being lightweight and sturdy, and also affordable, and do-able with our limited skills.

Lake conditions remain much better than had been predicted earlier in the year.

With 199,281 acre feet at elevation 7144.99 feet, Heron Lake is half full and at its highest level for the season. It is up 197 a.f. and 6/10" in 24 hours and up 1.6" and more than 500 a.f. in 72 hours.

With 352,672 a.f. at elevation 4327.18' above benchmark, Elephant Butte Lake is up about 1/4" and 216 a.f. in 24 hours, 3/4" and 652 a.f. in 72 hours. The lake is as high as it was during the Joshua Slocum regatta on May 13, 2006. If the lake receives seven more feet this fall, it will be higher next January than is was at the beginning of this year. Despite this year's limited spring runoff, we may start next year better off than this year.

430,410 a.f., 4,334.06' elev., January 1, 2006, conditions for Elephant Butte Lake
503,030 a.f., 4,339.88' elev., March 5, 2006 -- high point
183,870 a.f., 4,308.50' elev., July 28, 2006 -- low point
352,672 a.f., 4,327.18' elev., August 5, 2006 -- up 18 feet, 8 inches from low point... so far.


At 7:45 AM, October 22, 2006, Anonymous AdriftAtSea said...


Ouch...what happened to Black Magic. I just wish I were closer and could help more, other than giving you and Carol Anne my moral support via your two blogs. :D



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