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Water Management

Roadmap of District with projectsKnown as the Headwaters District, the Pittsburgh District is comprised of the Ohio River drainage basin above New Martinsville, West Virginia. The District covers an area of approximately 67,000 square kilometers (26,000 square miles), including portions of Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Ohio, New York and Maryland. Major river systems within the Pittsburgh District include the upper Ohio, the Allegheny, the Monongahela and the Beaver. The District manages 16 flood control and multipurpose reservoirs with a combined capacity of over 3.8 billion cubic meters (3 million acre feet) and 23 navigation locks and dams on 530 kilometers (330 miles) of navigable waterways. In addition, the District operates Lake Milton for the state of Ohio. The Pittsburgh District’s Water Management Section provides accurate and timely information on conditions at Corps of Engineers reservoirs, as well as levels along rivers and streams within the Pittsburgh District.
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Reservoir Conditions

Daily Reservoir Report and Forecast - Current and expected pool levels and releases for the next three days.

The U.S. Geological Survey provides statewide lake and reservoir tables for:

    Pennsylvania
    West Virginia
    Ohio

NOTE - Between January 2010 and January 2012, the Pittsburgh District converted all reservoir pool gages from the NGVD29 datum to the NAVD88 datum. The Corps has prepared a brochure explaining the datums. Questions about our Water Management program or conditions at Corps of Engineers reservoirs, as well as levels along rivers and streams within the Pittsburgh District, can be addressed to our Reservoir Control Center at (412)395-7300.

River Conditions

Data are obtained by satellite telemetry from field gaging stations and Hydro Lab units, and are NOT CHECKED OR VERIFIED before being posted.

Water Quantity and Quality Data for the Region

The U.S. Geological Survey provides statewide streamflow tables for:

    Pennsylvania 
    West Virginia 
    Ohio 
    New York 
    Maryland

The National Weather Service AHPS provides current and forecast river data for the Pittsburgh Area.

Weekend Recreation Outlook

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Current Status -  Thursday 21 August 2014

Conemaugh River Lake is at a pool level of 903.4 ft and rising. Conemaugh Lake is currently releasing 560 cfs.  The Vandergrift gage at 7am on Thursday is at 3.7 ft and stationary. On Friday, we plan to increase the outflow to 1,100 cfs. Showers and thunderstorms are forcasted from Thurday through Friday night. Total precipitatin amounts for this period is expected to range from 0.75" to 2" with higher amounts in localized areas with the potential of flash flooding. The Thursday morning NWS river forecast for Vandergrift shows a slow rise to 4.1' on Saturday and then stationary through Sunday. The Vandergrift current stage is available here.

The weather forecast for Vandergrift is provided by the National Weather Service.

Our primary reference for canoeing information is Roy Weil and Mary Shaw’s Canoeing Guide to Western Pennsylvania and Northern West Virginia. It indicates levels that are recommended limits for safe canoeing on the Conemaugh and Kiski.

Long Term Outlook

Both Conemaugh River Lake and Loyalhanna Lake are "flood control only" projects, thus there is no storage allocated in either lake for low flow augmentation, recreation enhancement or any other purpose. All other potential benefits can only be accommodated if there is no significant impact on their authorized purpose of flood control.

That said, during the summer recreation season, we attempt to time our operations to enhance recreational opportunities on the Kiski River, to the extent practicable. Your comments on this initiative are welcome.

As always, we are operating Conemaugh and Loyalhanna Lakes in accordance to their authorized project purpose of flood control. Operations (gate changes) can only be made for project purposes for which storage has been allocated. Any other project purposes (i.e., recreation) are accommodated to the extent feasible.

Current Status - Thursday 21 August 2014

Youghiogheny River Lake is at a pool level of 1429.4 ft and falling slowly.  The project is releasing 600 cfs.  The Ohiopyle gage at 7am on Thursday is at 2.0 ft and rising slowly.  On Friday, we plan to reduce the outflow to 500 cfs.  Showers and thunderstorms are forcasted from Thurday through Friday night.  Total precipitatin amounts for this period is expected to range from 0.75" to 1.75" with higher amounts in localized areas with the potential of flash flooding.  The Thursday morning NWS river forecast for Ohiopyle shows a rise to 3.6' on Saturday and then stationary through Sunday.  

The latest available Ohiopyle gage report and forecast is available here. The weather forecast for Ohiopyle is provided by the National Weather Service. Corps reservoir forecasts are always built into the NWS river forecasts, so the effects of our release changes are shown there.

Lake recreation users can call (814) 395-3166 for the current recorded information message on daily pool and outflow levels, safety, recreation, special events and fishing.

You can also call Ohiopyle State Park at (724) 329-8591 to hear a recorded message giving the daily stage reading.

Long Term Outlook

We are operating under the established low water regulation schedule and will continue to maintain downstream flow schedules. Youghiogheny River Lake's ideal summer pool range is between 1438.4' and 1440.4', although downstream flow requirements usually start to draw the lake below that level by the end of June. On average, the lake can be expected to fall slowly all summer long, ending up below 1400’ by November. Special weekend releases for whitewater rafting will continue as long as the lake is still above its drought watch level.

As always, we are operating Youghiogheny River Lake in accordance with its authorized project purposes of flood control, low flow augmentation for water quality and water supply. Operations (gate changes) can only be made for project purposes for which storage has been allocated. Other project purposes (i.e., fish and wildlife enhancement and recreation) are accommodated to the extent feasible. We continue to attempt to operate the project considering the needs of recreation users both on the lake and the river.
The outlooks above are generally updated every Thursday during recreation season.

Navigation Reports

Allegheny and Monongahela Rivers - Morning Report
Allegheny and Monongahela Rivers - Latest Report