The biggest year since 1995 on New Mexico’s Middle Rio Grande

Near the peak – the Rio Grande near San Felipe, May 2019

Thanks to continued high flows, this is now the wettest year on New Mexico’s Middle Rio Grande since 1995.

My measurement point is the San Felipe gauge on the Rio Grande in north-central New Mexico. The measure is total flow to date this year, compared to total flows at this point in all previous years going back to 1927.

I use the San Felipe gauge for two reasons. First, it is one of the older gauges on the river, and the oldest in the reach that flows through the greater Albuquerque area. Second, it is above several significant diversions – one agricultural at Angostura, the other municipal at Alameda. Thus it more accurately captures flow into the valley before we start skimming off water to do stuff with.

San Felipe gauge

At the Central Avenue bridge, another important measurement point, we’ve had the largest year-to-date flow since 2005. With continued high flows, we may yet surpass 2005 at Central as well.