Daly Ditches starts flushing water around the 5th of April in the main canals. During the 3rd and 4th week of April we’ll start opening up the laterals as people let us know their lateral is ready (cleaned and burned) for water. There are significant water use restrictions that apply for all Users. Daly Ditches will start the shutdown (in 3 stages) approximately the 3rd week of September.
Main canal maintenance is the responsibility of Daly Ditches. Private laterals (a ditch that comes off the main canal to feed specific users) are the responsibility of the Users. Users have the right to go up the ditch (staying on the approximately 10ft wide easement) for the purpose of maintenance, repair and delivery. Connecting laterals (ditches that convey water from one main canal to another) are cleaned by Daly Ditches. In the event of flooding due to any uncleaned laterals, the ditches will be turned down or off until the lateral is cleaned by the users. We encourage you to work with your neighbors.
Call the District Office at (406) 363-1130. Larger (20+ acres) irrigators please call when you turn on and off to limit lack of water and flooding. Irrigation season is typically mid-April through late September. We cannot legally deliver irrigation water as of October 1st. Water is ordered and delivered on a 24-hour basis.
Daly Ditches owns all of the water rights for the water we carry in our ditches. Those rights are designated for irrigation and stock water use only. They are not to be used to fill ponds. According to our DNRC Water Rights, the water is to be used for “beneficial use”. You are only allowed to use the amount your parcel is allotted from Daly Ditches. They are not to be turned on and left in the same place for days. If you are not using the water for “beneficial use” your water could be shut off. An example of this is excessively watering your land in the same place for more than 2-3 days.
After any land split — whether it’s a Boundary Line Relocation, Family Transfer, Court Appointed Split, Minor Subdivision or Major Subdivision — an Irrigation Plan must be submitted to Daly Ditches for approval. No water will be delivered until this is completed.
Typically in August there will be diminished water and cutbacks will be necessary. The cutbacks can be as drastic as 1/3-2/3 and in some years even more cutbacks will be required. Please keep in mind that ranchers and farmers’ livelihood is dependent on water.
When the ditches are running at 100%, Users are allotted on one acre the equivalent of one of the following: 3 – 5/32 heads (this is the size of a nozzle on a typical hand line), 4 Rainbird oscillating sprinklers or 6 of the pop-up’s. Exact usage is explained in detail in our bylaws.
When the Skalkaho Hiline, Gird Hiline, Hughes, Ward, Reeser, Thompson and Studbarn ditches would run at 1/3 capacity, the Users on these ditches are required to reduce their irrigating by 2/3’s. This means you would utilize the above formula but only water every 3 days. For example, if you have one acre you are restricted to water that one acre using 3 hand lines for 24 hours every third day, or 6 hand lines every 6 days. If you have a lawn that is one acre and it has 32 Rainbird oscillating sprinklers you would be allowed to run 32 heads for a total of 6 hours every 6 days.
The best time to water is 10pm to 10am. Large guns depending on nozzle size on one acre would be limited to 2 hours every 6 days. Violation of the above restrictions could result in your water being turned off completely. Experts say that typical lawn grass will survive on 1/4 inch of water every 4 weeks. It will turn brown but when it is watered 2 months later it will green up. Non-compliance to cutbacks can result in your water being turned off for the remainder of the season.
Typically, the Hedge and Republican ditches water will have less of a cutback. The River Rider will inform us of what those cutbacks may entail, but the formulas above would work accordingly. We would like to encourage our Users to work together and conserve water.
No herbicides can be used in close proximity to the main or lateral ditches.
Yes. Your irrigated acres consist of irrigable land. Some parcels have non-irrigable land containing uneven land surfaces, certain soils, buildings, driveways, etc.
$24.11 per irrigated acre and a $80.00 administrative fee per water user. All fees are assessed on the property taxes.
No. Daly Ditches water is on continuous flow 24/7. It cannot be stored up for later use.