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Report on floods from the Meadow Valley Wash, Muddy River, and California Wash, after 1945




1945 to open end


List of major floods in the Moapa Valley with accompanying map.

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Physical Identifier

Box 4 Folder 47 Flood Control Reports and Maps for Southern Nevada 1934-1950


hln000605. John Wittwer Collection on Agriculture in Nevada, 1898-1972. MS-00181. Special Collections and Archives, University Libraries, University of Nevada, Las Vegas. Las Vegas, Nevada.


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1. FLOODS FROM THE ?Meadow Valley Wash ?Muddy River ?California Wash Drainage areas have caused damages amounting to approximately $7,000,00 to the railroads. $700,000 to farm lands, homes, livestock, crops and highways since about 1906 to the present time. 2. FLOOD CONTROL WORK that has been done by C.C.C. Camps in cooperation with the Muddy Valley Irrigation Company have reduced losses immensely. As may be seen by these construction works here at Wells Siding, there has never been a day that the irrigation water hasn't been in each the Logandale and the Overton Canals. Previous to the construction of these works, water would go out of the canals for from a few days to a week or two with every flood that came down from any one of the drainage areas mentioned and as shown on the Map. 5. INVESTIGATIONS The Army Engineers have made a preliminary study of the watershed. They are to complete a more detailed study. Indications are that those detailed studies might be completed in time for working out an overall program of Flood Control and Reclamation as will be more fully explained by Mr. Adair when he reports progress of the Bureau of Reclamation's Investigations of the Muddy River. 4. NEED FOR CONTROL OF FLOODS MOST URGENT,? ---To prevent further heavy Channel cutting and washing away of valuable lands in the upper end of this lower Valley. ---To avoid overflowing and flooding of homes and farms in the lower part of this lower Valley. NOTE: The accompanying map indicates roughly the source of most menacing floods since the advent of the Union Pacific RailRoad 1902-3. HISTORY OF MAJOR FLOODS I MEADOW VALLEY WASH 1910 - 10,000 c.f.s. at Caliente (January) 1925 - 8,000 c.f.s. at Glendale (September) 1938 - 20,000 c.f.s. at Caliente (January) The major portions of flood flows of the 1910 and the 1938 flood originated in the (1) Mathews and the (2) Pine Canyons. Major flows of several other intervening floods of from 6,000 to 8,000 c.f.s. flows had their origin in these two drainage areas. 1945 - 7,500 c.f.s. below Caliente (October) II UPPER MUDDY RIVER Previous to 1935 intermittent floods of from 500 to 3,000 c.f.s. flows almost yearly; an occasional flood about every five to ten years flood flows of from 4,000 to 6,000 c.f.s.. 1937-1939 two flood flows of approximately 5,000 and 7,500 c.f.s. from August-September Flash Storms. III CALIFORNIA WASH Menacing floods of from 1,000 to 3,000 c.f.s. every two to three years. 1945-10,000 c.f.s. at the junction of the California Wash and the Muddy River. Damages in sum total from these floods have been estimated for (1) Railroads and Railroad Services, over $6,000,000.00; (2) Farm lands, homes, highways and roads, irrigation structures and Ranch operations, over $700,000.00 since 1900. As may be fully understood, with increase in improvements, developments, population, property valuations, business, mining, transportation and agricultural activities, risks to further property losses and danger to human life, make for ever increasing dangers to community interests involved. (W3) FLOOD MENACE ORIGINATING IN, I. MEADOW VALLEY WASH of which critical areas are: 1. Mathews Canyon Drainage area. 2. Pine Canyon Drainage area II. UPPER MUDDY DRAINAGE to be controlled by the proposed WHITE NARROWS DAM. III. CALIFORNIA WASH DRAINAGE