Aspen Journalism is compiling a data dashboard highlighting metrics of local public interest. Check back for updates as we add more features.

Water data: Low streamflows and dry summer

The Roaring Fork River near Aspen, at the Stillwater gauge above town, was flowing 46.1% of normal on June 16.

Streamflows have significantly dropped since June 7, around which time most local waterways saw their seasonal peak flows. With the peak flows coming in low and early, streamflows are now registering as low as 24 percent of average, on the Colorado River at the Utah state line.

According to the Roaring Fork River Conservancy, when streamflows are dropping, the water temperatures are rising. Water temperatures on the Colorado River are already reaching 60°F by noon. Higher temperatures mean the water holds less oxygen, which is necessary to support aquatic life.

Lake Powell’s water level was at 34.77% of full on June 16, the lowest level in at least the last 10 years. 

Air temperature: Hot start to summer

Temperatures have been well above average this week. The high of 89 degrees at the Aspen airport on Sunday was 16 degrees higher than that day’s average high of 73 degrees. There is lag time in the release of NOAA data used to update this feature, as the most up to date information as of Friday was through June 13.

Air quality data: Fire season has started

Active wildfires in Utah and New Mexico have affected regional air quality. Aspen’s air quality, measured on the air quality index scale, elevated into the moderate category on June 8, 9 and 16.

Laurine Lassalle is Aspen Journalism’s data desk editor, where she works to catalogue and analyze local public data. She also heads our our “Tracking the Curve” project, documenting COVID-19 in Pitkin,...