Lake Nacimiento will be 20 percent full by Labor Day

Lake Nacimiento will be 20 percent full by Labor Day. Where does all the water go?
  • April 19, 2018 01:12 PM
Updated April 19, 2018 01:29 PM

One year removed from a particularly rainy winter, Lake Nacimiento landowners and boaters are facing a summer recreation season of dramatically lower water levels.
By Labor Day, Nacimiento will be too low to launch boats from most private ramps that dot a lake that has 163 miles of shoreline when it's full.
That's because Nacimiento — which has a total capacity of 377,900 acre-feet — is less a lake and more a huge agricultural reservoir used by Salinas Valley landowners in Monterey County.
Since it was built in 1957, recreational users, farmers and environmentalists have spent decades jockeying for control of the lake's water — a resource that has increasingly become like liquid gold.
This year, Nacimiento is expected to contain about 20 percent of its water by Sept. 1, down from 51 percent on April 18.
Nacimiento as a reservoir
So where does all the water go?

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