Carson River Basin
Flooding was caused by warm rain that melted the snowpack at higher altitudes. Rain began on the evening of December 9, then intensified the following day, and continued until December 11. Most of the snowpack at higher elevations melted. The Douglas Power (Ruhenstroth) Dam on the East Fork Carson River upstream of Gardnerville was severely damaged. Flooding started in southern Carson Valley on December 10. Along the West Fork Carson River, parts of State Route 88 flooded to a depth of 14 inches. Highway 395 between Carson City and Gardnerville was closed due to Cradlebaugh bridge which was under about 18 inches of water from the Carson River. A total of 3.7 inches was recorded for the storm period at both the National Weather Service precipitation gages for Carson City and Minden (U.S. Department of Agriculture, 1973).
Selected Streamflow Peaks
|Site ID||Gaging Station||Peak (cubic feet per second)|
|10309000||East Fork Carson River near Gardnerville, Nev.||10,300|
|10310000||West Fork Carson River at Woodfords, Calif.||3,500|
|10312000||Carson River at Fort Churchill, Nev.||5,500|