2023 Irrigation Season in the Middle Rio Grande Valley Comes to Close
This year’s irrigation season for the Middle Rio Grande Valley has come to a close. Other than remaining deliveries to tribal Prior and Paramount lands until November 15, water deliveries are complete for the season and MRGCD will enter off season. While water deliveries will halt, water managers at MRGCD will focus on infrastructure improvements and maintenance, as well as monitor fall and winter rain and snowfall in preparation of the 2024 irrigation season. Residents of the Middle Rio Grande Valley will notice an increase in river flow beginning on or around Thursday, November 2; water of which is attributed to flood control operations of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and will be delivered to Elephant Butte, in accordance with the Rio Grande Compact.
Irrigators and water managers faced challenges this season including higher-than-usual temperatures, lack of rainfall and MRGCD’s inability to store water at El Vado Dam, the only reservoir the District is currently authorized to store native Rio Grande water. As always, MRGCD officials will hope for plentiful precipitation this fall and winter, making for abundant spring runoff and will continue to work with other New Mexico agencies and lawmakers to increase its ability to store water to make available to its constituents during the 2024 irrigation season.