Rio grande valley dating
Within the stretch between these dams, the river passes three mainstream structures that divert water into 1,280 kilometres (800 mi) of levees, canals and drains in the section between Algodones and the Bosque del Apache National Wildlife Refuge.
When the river is low, the diversion dams at Isleta and San Acacia can divert all water from the Rio Grande along a 177 kilometres (110 mi) stretch of the river.
The surface of the basin has extensive wind-blown deposits of sand sheets and dunes from the late Pleistocene and Holocene.
Average annual temperatures are around 13 °C (55 °F), ranging from an average of about 1 °C (34 °F) in January to about 24 °C (75 °F) in July.
With growing urbanization, the role of the MRGCD has gradually shifted from supporting agriculture to preserving the riverside ecology and helping to recharge the Albuquerque aquifer.Throughout the basin, which receives little rainfall, there are sand dunes and dune fields, some vegetated and some active.The Santa Fe group deposits accumulated in the basin between the middle Miocene and early Pliocene, from fifteen to one million years ago.Most of the resulting basalt and andesite rock is on the west side of the basin.
The Albuquerque volcanic field contains volcanoes to the west of the city of Albuquerque that were active as recently as 156,000 years ago.The Rio Grande, which flows from southwestern Colorado for 2,000 kilometres (1,200 mi) before entering the Gulf of Mexico, was classified in 1993 as one of North America's most endangered or imperiled rivers.