Water Supply Outlook for Alberta

April 2003

Plains Runoff Outlook

As of April 1, 2003, spring snowmelt runoff is forecast to be above-average to much-above-average for plains areas of the Peace River, Grande Prairie, and Red Deer regions (Figure 1). The Edmonton, Slave Lake and Cold lake regions are forecast to receive average to above-average snowmelt runoff. The snowpack is above-average to much-above-average in these areas, but soil moisture is very dry especially in the Edmonton and Cold Lake regions.

Areas along the foothills from the Edson area to Calgary are forecast to recieve below-average to average runoff from the remaining snow. Below-average to much-below-average runoff is expected in the plains east of the Edmonton and Red Deer regions. Runoff is complete in the plains south of the Red Deer area.

Below-average runoff is forecast for the High Level, Fort Chipewyan, and Fort McMurray regions. The snowpack is generally below-average and soil moisture is low in these areas.

Spring snowmelt is well underway in much of south and central Alberta and much of the snowpack has been depleted. Much-above-normal temperatures and sunny weather in mid-March caused snow in many of these areas to melt very rapidly, producing average to much-above-average runoff.

Alberta Environment forecasters are monitoring the snowmelt situation. Check the Forecaster's Comments on the department website throughout the month for the most current conditions.

For technical enquires about this web page please contact Alberta Environment - Environmental Management Water Management Operations Branch at AENV-WebWS@gov.ab.ca