drought in Colorado

Drought Update

According to the National Integrated Drought Information System (NIDIS), 82.8 percent of the state is currently experiencing some level of drought (with 98.5 percent being at least abnormally dry). The map featured above shows the drought conditions on July 5.

Keep the following in mind when it comes to maintaining your landscape in Colorado’s arid climate.

Xeriscape gardens and landscapes conserve water while saving you money! With persistent drought conditions looming, it’s time to consider giving your lawn a xeric makeover. Landscapes can require 50% of the water used for home consumption. Transforming your lawn can save you 30% to 80% on your water bill.

July is Smart Irrigation Month – upgrade your irrigation system to conserve water and save money! Damage from lawn equipment or improper winterization can cause leaks and other serious problems that can cost you a significant amount of wasted water.

Summer Watering Rules are in effect until October 1st. Colorado’s climate is warming, and it’s more important than ever to use water efficiently. The watering rules incorporate best practices for efficient outdoor water use that will help keep your landscape healthy.

As of July 11, cumulative precipitation in the Colorado River watershed was tracking at 101% of average and the South Platte River watershed was tracking at 92% of average. 

Denver Water’s planners do not expect the utility’s reservoirs to completely fill this season. They are 92% full and were 97% full this time last year. Denver Water’s supply reservoir contents as of July 11 are represented in the table below.


ReservoirPercent Full: CurrentPercent Full: Historical Median
Eleven Mile102%102%
Strontia Springs102%93%
Meadow Creek9%35%

The district will continue to work with Denver Water on monitoring the watersheds and will provide updates to our customers through our website and social media channels.