OGDEN -- The Ogden River is running so high that at least one cabin owner in Ogden Canyon put sandbags along his property line Sunday, but Tage Flint says he hasn't seen anything yet.
"The Ogden River in Ogden Canyon has not reached anywhere near peak flow yet," said Flint, director of the Weber Basin Water Conservancy District.
"It did pick up over the weekend because of some runoff, and some creeks below the dam being high, but we only got to about two-thirds of what the channel capacity is."
Flint's job is to keep the Ogden River from overflowing while he also keeps Pineview Reservoir from getting too full too soon. It is the same balancing act the Water Conservancy District is doing for all of its dams and rivers that reach almost to Mirror Lake and Park City.
"I've got an engineer working on it full time," Flint said Monday.
It is going to be a busy year for that engineer. Flint said the snowpack as of Monday morning was at 140 percent of average, more snow was falling all over Top of Utah on Monday and the National Weather Service says more is expected later this week.
Flint said his agency's job at this point is to make sure the reservoirs have enough capacity to catch the spring runoff over the next two months without overflowing or putting so much water into rivers that they spill over their banks.
It's a delicate balancing act that involves monitoring what goes into each reservoir and adjusting how much goes out, often several times a day.
Flint said the high water in the Ogden and Weber rivers is not directly the result of snow runoff.
"We are dropping reservoirs," trying to make room for snow runoff in April and May, he said. That means letting more out of Pineview than is flowing in.
The Ogden River's level is almost totally controlled by releases from Pineview Reservoir. The only waters Flint's engineers can't control are those below the dam, such as Wheeler Creek.
Flint said the question he gets asked a lot is whether a high snowpack means a repeat of 1986, when rivers ran so high that State Street in Salt Lake City had to be turned into a river, Great Salt Lake rose rapidly and mud slides slammed into Farmington and other cities.
That all depends on what sort of weather Utah has in April and May, Flint said. "If it all comes off nice and evenly, we shouldn't have much problem at all," he said, but a wet and cold April, followed by a wet and warm May, will be trouble.