Glenn County - Tehama County - Colusa County , California.
(c) 2001, Mike Barkley


[This is a transcription of a portion of a report on file at the court. I've made every effort to present the content precisely, but not the form.]

From the "Report of Water Master to the [U.S. District Court]...Season of 1946", p. 2:


As is so often the case, rain came in good quantity shortly after the irrigation season had closed, over three inches fell on October, over two in November and over seven and one-half in December all this in 1945 and then a drop to less than an inch in January, a little over an inch in February and about an inch in March in 1946. Up to the first of the year optimism ran high only to be shattered shortly after the new year, tho there was enough moisture to keep the feed growing for the stock raisers and fairly well for the dry farmers but was not enough to help much with sub-surface supply for future needs even tho the snow pack in the area was about normal, this is always thought to be a big help tho it does not always follow thru, the snow water lasted well into May and disappeared entirely the latter part of June tho after June first the amount was too small to be of much help.

On the Orland Project they started irrigatind [sic] early in March with two full reservoirs using only natural flow at first. On May first the natural flow was insuffient and water was released from Stony Gorge reservoir.

With the early release of stored water and the ever increasing demand for water on the project (reasons unknown) at the end of the irrigation season there remained only 2,540 acre feet of water in the East Park reservoir and 1280 acre feet in Stony Gorge reservoir. As in several years past, the use on the project increased with no reasonable explanation the use this year, including water wasted, was 123,500. acre feet, an all time high, and only about 100 acres [sic] were irrigated. Some time a dry year is going to follow two dry reservoirs.

Those whos [sic] rights pertain to the natural flow only, fared much better than expected, all demands were supplied without the necessity of rotating tho the supply did got low before the season was ended, this applies only to those who irrigate from the main channel of Stony Creek, those on the smaller tributaries started their irrigating earlier and as usual their supply failed about as usual, around the fore part of July in general tho a few small streams did run a small amount throughout the season.

The dry, farmers who seeded before the the [sic] early rains had pretty fair crops but those who waited until after the first of the new year were pretty hard hit. The cattle men suffered quite badly as the feed in the hills gave out early and the stock got very thin unless the owner was prepared for early feeding and even then there was considerable suffering.

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[In general, defendants who claimed rights solely for stock watering fared very poorly in the Decree, such as E.H.Tryon on Burroughs (now Burris) Creek who faced a scathing replication from Reclamation in response to his assertions of stock watering riparian rights.]

Return to Stony Creek Water Wars.

--Mike Barkley, 161 N. Sheridan Ave. #1, Manteca, CA 95336 (H) 209/823-4817