Watershed Planning in the Upper Gila Watershed

Working for a Resilient Future: Upper Gila Watershed

People working together In the face of uncertain physically and legally available water supplies, how do we:

Provide reliable long-term water supplies for a resilient community;
Preserve the ability for the watershed to produce food, fiber, and minerals;
Maintain the rural lifestyle; and Sustain and enhance the health of the Upper Gila River Watershed

Where does the water go?

Groundwater resources are precious in the Upper Gila Watershed and surface water is highly regulated. Agriculture accounts for nearly 90% of water demand in the Watershed. However, return flows from agriculture back into the system are not as well-known.  

A Patchwork of landownership

In the Arizona stretches of the Upper Gila River, only 10% of the watershed is privately owned and concentrated along the river corridor.

High degree of uncertainty

Looking out 30 years, Gila Valley could face a deficit of -31,000 Acre Feet (AF) of water in a worst-

Resilient partnerships

For the watershed project on Brawley Ranch, Gila Watershed Partnership worked with Graham County and the BLM to put 56 wire and rock gabions along a 15-mile stretch of road to control erosion and washouts. In 2013, the BLM donated 30,000 tons of rock for maintenance.

Watershed Planning Tools

What you need to know about watershed planning in the Upper Gila: process, outcomes, and lessons learned.


watershed assessment

Watershed Assessment

A repository of information about the natural, water, and cultural resources of the Upper Gila River Watershed


alternate futures

Alternate Futures

Exploring how decisions made TODAY impact the future of people, businesses, and nature into the FUTURE


supply and demand icon

Supply VS Demand

Water deficits could be a reality in the Upper Gila Watershed


Guidebook icon

A Guide for Landowners on the Upper Gila River



Shared history of the Upper Gila Watershed

state watershed conference

First Annual State of the Watershed in the Upper Gila

An annual event that draws key players and new faces to the table, celebrates successes and pinpoints areas that need work. 2017 marked the beginning of a new tradition in the watershed!