Our irrigation system was completed back in 1972 and irrigates the vast majority of the North Shore of Lake Chelan from Green's Landing all the way in to the lower parts of Union Valley in Chelan. (That's just behind Wal-Mart)! There are over 73 miles of pipeline that the District maintains in order to reach all the irrigable lands within its boundaries. Often during the hottest times of the year, we draw in an excess of 150 acre feet of water from Lake Chelan and pump it throughout the District. When you convert acre feet to gallons, you'll see that's equal to over 48 million gallons of water each day! The irrigation system is not potable water and should never be consumed.
2017 Federal Irrigation Comprehensive Water Conservation Plan
The Lake Chelan Reclamation Irrigation System provides irrigation to 1808 customers in the Lake Chelan Valley. The water comes directly from Lake Chelan next to Mill Bay Boat Launch. Irrigation is billed as an annual assessment from January 1 - December 31st, however the irrigation water is only available from April 1st to October 15th. Federal Irrigation water is not treated and should never be drank or consumed. Irrigation water is provided to a turnout. The customer is responsible for all plumbing after the can. We recommend you install a good filter system and a pressure regulating valve to protect your system from high pressure situations. See our newsletter "What you need to know about using Federal Irrigation Water".
Approximately 250 acres of irrigation water rights are delivered through the domestic system. The allotment of three acre feet per acre is credited to the domestic meter only after the annual irrigation assessment is paid in full. The annual Irrigation Assessment is mailed to you in February and is due in full by April 1st. Even though this is an annual assessment, the allotment is only available between the months of April and October.
Several water users over the past year have run into excess charges due to the usage of their entire irrigation allotment before the irrigating season was complete. The water bills are designed to keep you appraised of the irrigation allotment on your meter and the balance remaining. It is important that you monitor this irrigation allotment and manage your irrigation use accordingly.
The 2017 Annual Irrigation Assessment is billed at $145 per acre plus a $130 delivery fee. Any excess domestic irrigation is billed at $4.29 for every 100 cubic feet over your allotment.
The District does not approve the use of yard hydrants and stop and waste valves.
What do I need to know about the Federal Irrigation Water?
- Federal Irrigation Water may only be used on lands classified as "Irrigable" by the Federal Bureau of Reclamation.
- Irrigation water is NOT potable and cannot be drank/consumed or hooked to an RV, house or any permanent structure.
- Irrigation water will not be turned on until payment of your assessment has been paid in full.
- LCRD provides water to an irrigation can/turnout thru a series of pumps and motors. All plumbing after the can is the responsibility of the property owner.
- Our policy states that you design your private irrigation system with the installation of a filter system and a pressure reducing valve. It is your responsibility to protect your private irrigation system. Visit http://www.irrigationtutorials.com/pvc-pipe-sch-vs-class/ For more information on pipe classes and pressure ratings.
- Irrigation cans are often shared by multiple owners. It is up to the benefited property owners to file agreements for maintaining any shared service mainlines and for having easements in place to access the irrigation water.
Rules Of Thumb For Water Use On Lawns And Gardens
- One deep watering is much better than watering several times lightly.
- Lawns need about 1 inch of water each week. If the weather is very hot, apply an inch of water about every 3 days.
- Watering to a depth of 4-6 inches encourages deeper, healthier root development. It allows longer periods between watering.
- To measure the water, put an empty tuna can on the lawn while watering. Stop watering when the can is full
- Early morning or night is the best time for watering to reduce evaporation.
- Leave the grass clippings to decompose on the lawn. Annually, this will provide nutrients equivalent to one or two fertilizer applications. Keep grass at least two inches high to shade roots and hold moisture.
A Little Bit Of History
- A contract was made between Lake Chelan Reclamation District and the Bureau of Reclamation in 1971 to provide irrigation water to the Lake Chelan area.
- Contract conditions included the following:
- The United States would build and own the irrigation system. The District would pay approximately 15% of the project cost by a 50 year 0% interest loan. The main purpose of the project was to maintain and expand the agricultural economy that existed prior to 1971.
- The federal project was designed to provide irrigation water to primarily irrigable property that could support fruit production for the local economy.
- Certain lands were classified by the Bureau as irrigable and the District assessed property based on that classification.
- All irrigation water came from Lake Chelan and was delivered to customers in a pressurized pipe system with a metered turnout for approximately 20 acre tracts of land.
- The project included drainage works for approximately 1500 acres of certain low lying orchard land that was considered to be available for fruit orchards.
- The project included favorable power rate provisions for the irrigation pumping plants to deliver irrigation water to orchards.
- The District agreed to operate and maintain the federal irrigation system according to the contract.
- The Contract covered irrigation for 6225 irrigable acres. This was later amended to include up to 6336 irrigable acres.