The Colorado is a long, wide, slow-moving river with few whitewater hazards and plenty of scenery to capture your eye. The section between Austin and FM 969 starts inside Austin city limit and continues to south of Webberville about 40 miles below. Flowing northwest to southeast, the Colorado River is characterized by sometimes strong southeasterly headwinds that will slow you down and which may make your trip a little less enjoyable. There are at least five public access points for putting in and taking out, but some stretches can be many miles between them, so careful trip planning is essential. Between May and October you can expect hot days and warm nights. Take along some insect repellant during warmer months.
Southern Nevada gets nearly 90 percent of its water supply from the Colorado River, which begins as snow melt in the Rocky Mountains. The snow melt travels through a series of tributaries into the river, which winds its way south for 1,450 miles and empties into the Gulf of California in Mexico.
Colorado River, river rising in western Texas, U.S., on the Llano Estacado (“Staked Plain”) in Dawson county, northeast of Lamesa. It flows generally southeastward past Colorado City, through rolling prairie and rugged hill and canyon country. By means of the Highland Lakes, six reservoirs—Buchanan, Inks, Lyndon B. Johnson, Marble Falls, Travis, and Austin—impounded by as many dams, the river flows past Austin and across the Coastal Plain to enter Matagorda Bay (an inlet of the Gulf of Mexico) after a course of some 862 miles (1,387 km).
The Colorado is the largest river lying entirely within Texas; it drains an area of about 39,900 square miles (103,350 square km) and receives several forks of the Concho River, the Pecan Bayou, and the San Saba, Llano, and Pedernales rivers. Its system of dams and reservoirs provides several important flood-control, power, irrigation, and recreational projects. Notable among the many recreational facilities is the Colorado River Trail, which links the various cultural and recreational features of 11 counties, from San Saba to Matagorda, that are joined by the river.
Nevada receives 300,000 acre-feet per year (AFY) of Colorado River water under the Law of the River compacts. An acre-foot is equivalent to 325,851 gallons of water.
When the allocation was assigned, Nevada’s negotiators viewed 300,000 acre-feet as more than reasonable for the sparsely populated Southern Nevada. The state instead focused on hydro-electricity and secured one-third of the electricity generated by Hoover Dam.