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Flood Information


2023 Montezuma County Water Runoff Plan

View the Plan


Flood Disaster Emergency Declaration and Resources

The Town of Dolores declares that there is a local flood disaster emergency in the Town.

There are a number of ways for an individual or family to find information regarding the 2023 runoff event.

  1. First we encourage everyone to sign up for Nixle, which provides real time updates from the sheriff's office and the county emergency manager; use your cell phone text. The TO is 888777
  2. The town's Facebook page is a source of information.
  3. The town website home page has a number of links to flood activities.
  4. The county's home page has a link to flood activities:
  5. The county sheriff page has a link to the flooding event:
  6. The Dolores Fire Protection Facebook page.

Water Run-off Update as of April 13

Thanks to all the volunteers, we have filled approximately 15,000 sandbags! We will not be filling sandbags on Friday, April 14. A small group of volunteers will be working on Saturday, but at this point, we do not need more help. We have around 4,000 stockpiled in the yard east of town for future needs but it looks like the need for them has passed, at least for now.

If you need sandbags over the weekend, please use either the marked ones on 14th Street (between Central and Hillside) or the ones across from the Post Office. We no longer need the ones at these locations and they can be used in other places. When sandbags are no longer needed, there will be a plan in place for the used sandbags. Watch for that information.

Town Public Works crews will continue to monitor the water flows and will run the pumps as needed to move water across the highway. Crews are also watching run-off levels upriver.

The Montezuma County Office of Emergency Management will continue to monitor water levels from the run-off as well as the river. Beginning next week, information will be posted on boards located in prominent locations around Dolores. Please stop by and pick up information on actions to take before, during, and after flooding, instructions on how to pack a “go kit”, and other water-related information. We will also be tracking flow rates on the Dolores River.

Don’t forget to sign up for Nixle alerts! Montezuma County uses this system to send out emergency alerts related to weather warnings, road closures, missing persons, law enforcement activity, and (as of this week) requests for emergency volunteer help! If you haven’t already, text your zip code to “888777” or sign up at

Thank you to all who have pitched in and helped over the last week! Have a great weekend!


Sandbags Available and Other Preparedness Advice

Although it is the homeowner's responsibility to protect their homes, during an emergency situation, Montezuma County has a limited number of bags and sand available for those who are currently experiencing flooding issues. (Empty sandbags are also available for purchase at local stores such as Slavens and Choice Building Supply.)

Empty sandbags for residents of Dolores (or upriver) are available at the Dolores Town Hall (Monday-Friday, 9-12 and 1-4:30) or at The Outfitter (Saturday 7-6 and Sunday 8-5).

Sand is available at Joe Rowell Park under a tarp. Please replace the tarp after filling sandbags. Bring your own shovel. This sand is for sandbags only.

Using Sandbags

  • Fill sandbags half to 2/3 full. Do not overfill. Ties can be used for transporting bags but shouldn't be used when laying sandbags. Fold top of bag under, leaving room for sand to spread out and bag to lay flat.Stack Sandbags like Bricks
  • Filled sandbags are heavy. Take steps to protect your back when filling, lifting, or placing sandbags.
  • Sandbags are to be used to protect yoru home-not outbuildings.
  • Sandbags should be used to divert water, not create a dam. Do not surround your whole house; focus on doorways or other areas where water might seep in.
  • Lay sandbags so that they fit closely and overlap like brickwork. If possible, lay plastic sheeting against the door to add further protection. Don't place sandbags directly against buildings.Stack Sandbags like Bricks
  • When laying sandbags, use around six per doorway.
  • When sandbagging longer stretches, stack sandbags in a pyramid shape, staggering layers like brickwork so that you don't have continuouse seams.

For more information on preparing for flooding, visit Ready.

Preparedness Advice

Water Run-off Update as of April 12, 2023 at 5:00 p.m.

With the continued warm weather, the Montezuma County Office of Emergency Management is expecting another evening of increased water flow from the drainages leading from the mesa to the town of Dolores. New areas of concern include properties upriver.

Residents upriver who might need them in the coming days may pick up sandbags on the east side of 14th Street from Central to Hillside. Please use only the ones that are marked by signs. We have a limited amount of sandbags and what we have will need to be reused until the danger of water damage has passed.

Dolores Fire Department volunteers and Public Works employees will be in town again tonight if needed to assist homeowners. If you need emergency assistance, please call dispatch (970-565-8441).

To help drain water to the Dolores River pumps were installed yesterday along Highway 145 This is helping alleviate runoff and the pumps will remain in place as long as they are needed.

The forecast shows that it should cool down over the next few days into next week. We should get some moisture, but not enough to cause concern. We are hopeful that cooler temperatures will slow the melt and give us a break for a few days.

Special thanks to the Dolores Food Market for their donation of lunch yesterday. They brought enough food to feed everyone lunch, as well as snacks and drinks for the rest of the day. Next time you’re in Dolores, be sure to stop and thank Linnea at the Food Market for her support.

Water Run-off Update as of 4-11-23 at 3:00pm

The Montezuma County Office of Emergency Management is expecting another evening of increased water flow from the drainages leading from the Boggy Draw area to the town of Dolores.

Sandbags are still available for those who need to protect their homes. If you need sandbags, they are at the Town’s property at 18470 Highway 145. The bags are already filled but you will need to load them yourself. (Filled sandbags weigh 30-50 pounds each.) Please take only what you need.

Dolores Fire Department volunteers and Public Works employees will be in town again tonight if needed to assist homeowners. If you need emergency assistance, please call dispatch (970-565-8441).

Water pumps have been installed along Highway 145 to help drain water to the Dolores River. This should help alleviate runoff from the east side of the town.

We so appreciate all the people who have come out to help over the last few days. This is what makes living in a small town so great! Everyone pulls together and accomplishes so much more than we could do without you! We’re also thankful for the volunteers who’ve showed up from other parts of the county.

Water Level Update