Round Valley Reservoir (Klamath)

Reachcode: 18010204002282 | Area: 310.8 acres | Shoreline: 3.4 mi | View on Interactive Map

(From Atlas of Oregon Lakes, Johnson et al. 1985)  Round Valley Reservoir is an irrigation reservoir in South Central Oregon, a semi-arid region with many water storage facilities for irrigation and stock watering. The largest reservoir in the immediate area is Gerber Reservoir, two miles to the north. Round Valley Reservoir was constructed in the 1950s to expand the irrigated acreage upstream from Gerber Reservoir, and hundreds of acres are productive as a result. The structure of the reservoir is unusual in that the dam, a 19-foot high earthfill dam, is at the northeast corner; yet when the reservoir is full, natural outflow occurs from the northwest corner. Water released from the spillway flows into a canal leading to Wildhorse Creek and thence to Gerber Reservoir. Only intermittent surface streams flow into Round Valley Reservoir and the contributing drainage basin is quite small. The entire area is under the administration of the Bureau of Land Management and is primarily rangeland (juniper) used for grazing. Thus, the reservoir serves also as a source for stock watering. There are no recreation facilities at the reservoir and fishing pressure is light.

When the reservoir is full the surface area exceeds 300 acres, but even then it is an extremely shallow impoundment, with a maximum depth of only 6 feet. The concentrations of ions and the conductivity are about average for eastern Oregon reservoirs, but the pH is above average (8 or greater). Calcium, magnesium and sulfate concentrations are high relative to other ions. Macrophytes grow profusely, the concentration of phosphorus is quite high, and chlorophyl concentration is above average for reservoirs in this environment. A plankton tow taken on 8/10/82 collected a solid bloom of the blue-green alga, Gloeotrichia echinulata. Water transparency is very limited (2.3 feet; 0.7 meters) and the water has a somewhat brownish cast. Primary productivity is high, largely due to the growth of the macrophytes. On all counts Round Valley Reservoir is distinctly eutrophic.