Lake Oroville Community Update - April 3, 2020


A boat on Lake Oroville

Boat on Lake Oroville. DWR/ 2019

OFD Work Continues

Oroville Field Division staff continue to carry out essential duties including operations of Oroville Dam and affiliated power plants, maintenance and monitoring activities. Following guidance from Governor Newsom and the California Department of Public Health, OFD has made several changes in response to the dynamic situation including social distancing, telework and increased sanitary precautions for staff.


Please remember that California's water treatment process removes and kills viruses, including COVID-19. Additionally, tap water is cheaper, easily accessible and doesn't contribute to plastics pollution.


Closures Update

As a result of the Covid-19 pandemic, most of the recreation facilities associated with the Lake Oroville State Recreation Area have been closed as has the Lake Oroville Visitors Center and public access to the Feather River Fish Hatchery. Information regarding the status of these facilities can be found at “Flatten the Curve at State Parks” or by contacting DWR at or calling DWR at (916) 653-5791.


Upper Feather River Lakes Recreational Closures

The U.S. Forest Service has closed all developed recreation sites, including boat launch facilities and campgrounds at Frenchman Lake, Lake Davis and Antelope Lake in Plumas County until April 30 to protect the health and safety of employees and members of the public, in accordance with guidance from federal and state authorities. Public access to developed areas, except trailheads, is now prohibited at these State Water Project facilities. For information on other Forest Service facilities, find your national forest at


CAL FIRE – Butte County Continues Collaboration with DWR

CAL FIRE and DWR continue to work together to reduce wildfire risk, improve public safety and enhance forest health around Lake Oroville through the CAL FIRE Vegetation Management Program and DWR’s Fuel Load Management Plan (FLMP). DWR contractors have removed hazardous fuels including overstocked trees and underbrush from approximately 20 acres at the south end of Loafer Creek. CAL FIRE crews continue burning the brush piles seven days a week as weather allows. Smoke from the burn piles may be visible by area residents and motorists on State Route 162 near the Forbestown Road area.


Current Lake Operations

The elevation of Oroville’s reservoir is nearly 810 feet and storage is about 2.3 million acre-feet. Daily average inflows to the lake have ranged between 2,589 cfs (cubic feet per second) to 4,216 cfs over the past week. 

Beginning Saturday through Monday, between 2 to 3 inches of precipitation is expected.  A slight chance of rain continues during the week of April 6.  Currently, in the Northern Sierra Basin, rainfall is below average, at 55 percent of normal, and snowpack is also below average, measuring 56 percent of normal for this time of year.

On Friday, DWR increased flow through the  City of Oroville from 800 cfs to 1,300 cfs for fisheries purposes.  There is about 450 cfs being released from the Thermalito Afterbay Outlet.   The total release to the to the Feather River remain at 1,750 cfs.

All data as of midnight 4/2/20