Imperial Reservoir

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For the reservoir in Texas, see Imperial Reservoir (Texas).
Imperial Reservoir
IMPERIAL DAM-ON THE COLORADO RIVER - NARA - 549004.jpg
Imperial Diversion Dam and Reservoir complex in 1972
Location Lower Colorado River Valley
Imperial County, California
Yuma County, Arizona
Coordinates 32°53′00″N 114°28′04″W / 32.8833°N 114.4677°W / 32.8833; -114.4677Coordinates: 32°53′00″N 114°28′04″W / 32.8833°N 114.4677°W / 32.8833; -114.4677
Lake type Reservoir
Primary inflows Colorado River
Primary outflows Colorado River
Catchment area 5,756 acres (2,329 ha)
Basin countries United States
Surface area 28 km2 (11 sq mi)
Water volume 160,000 acre·ft (200,000,000 m3)
Surface elevation 56 m (184 ft)
References U.S. Geological Survey Geographic Names Information System: Imperial Reservoir

The Imperial Reservoir is an artificial lake formed by the construction of the Imperial Diversion Dam across the Colorado River in the Lower Colorado River Valley of Imperial County, California, and Yuma County, Arizona. A component of the Imperial National Wildlife Refuge, the reservoir is 16 miles (26 km) northeast of Yuma, Arizona.

Dry wash watersheds[edit]

Dry washes are the major watershed feed systems to Imperial Reservoir. The next upstream major watershed feeder is the Bill Williams River from western Arizona. Upstream on the Colorado River, the basic feeder watershed to Imperial Reservoir is the Havasu-Mojave Lakes Watershed, of Lake Havasu.

Two dry wash watershed attempt to enter the Imperial Reservoir from western Arizona, south of the Bill Williams River: the Bouse and Tyson Washes. Both washes end on the eastern perimeter of the Colorado River Indian Reservation along the Colorado River. Neither enters the river proper, except in extreme flood stage.

No "lengthy" watersheds flow eastwards from California; all are short distance, in the extreme aridity of this desert region.

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