“This is a rare year,” he said. “I’ve been doing this for 26 years, and we’ve had big (snow) years, but this one is unique as far as being up within an inch of being full and it’s just hanging there … It’s a product of still having so much snow up there.”
Lake Tahoe, the second-deepest lake in the U.S. at about 1,645 feet (501 meters), typically holds enough water to cover the entire state of California with 14 inches (35 centimeters) of the wet stuff.
Only Oregon’s Crater Lake is deeper.
As winter snow continues to melt from mountain tops and into Tahoe, the rate of summertime surface evaporation is beginning to pick up.
Blanchard says the lake soon will reach a point of equilibrium when snowmelt slows and the rate of evaporation increases. Then, the lake level will begin to drop.
“What it means going forward is a good water supply for three years,” he said.