San Vicente Dam

WHAT’S BEHIND the San Vicente Dam next year?

Excavators and crews were clearing the outlet channel here in Lake Elsinore last week. Fearing the potential of a wet winter, I presume they, like many homeowners, are thinking they better act now, rather than deal with the consequences potential run-off.

With regard to the outlet channel (that leads out through the wetlands, northward to the Santa Ana River), if heavy rain comes, debris could block the water’s egress and lead to flooding that could split the city in half, just as it did in the early 1980’s.

But is this a potential El Niño condition, or like what we see in coastal ocean waters, just warmer than normal sea temperatures here–but not necessarily on the other side of the globe?

For in fact, some El Niño events don’t have much rainfall, but of course, we all remember the wet ones. And sometimes it just rains in winter–like it’s supposed to.

Looking at fishing prospects, and especially the potential reopening of San Vicente Lake in San Diego County in November of 2015, is this a sure thing? I looked at the photos of the beautiful new marina area–but it is still as dry as Glamis.

Will we get enough rainfall in a single marginal winter, or are we looking at multiple wet seasons to accomplish the task? The new dam is impressive, but without the water it’s just the Great Wall of Lakeside.

What concerns me also was the Nov. 6 ENSO report on the matter, excerpted here [italics added]:

“Similar to last month, most models predict El Niño to develop during October-December 2014 and to continue into early 2015. However, the ongoing lack of clear atmosphere-ocean coupling and the latest NCEP CFSv2 model forecast have reduced confidence that El Niño will fully materialize.…. If El Niño does emerge, the forecaster consensus favors a weak event. In summary, there is a 58% chance of El Niño during the Northern Hemisphere winter, which is favored to last into the Northern Hemisphere spring 2015.

And we all know that a 58 percent chance of rain is also a 42 percent chance of none.


3 Responses to “Either it rains or it doesn’t”

Yes! You did a drought related blog. I predict 100% that rain will hit within the next 2 weeks. BTW, Canyon and Elsinore will benefit greatly with the new Riverside County flood control channel being built off of 215 fwy / Ethanac Rd which will be connected to the San Jacinto river bed. That’s if they get it completed before the end of the rain season.

Usually rains for the Bass-a-thon.

Like it, “the Great Wall of Lakeside” 🙂 Good topic. I hope we get some rain despite our fishing needs. This county needs it bad. I always say we get Sun, Wind, an Fire. No rain! A wet dewy morning or a light mist is like rain to us now days.