By Renae Counter Explorebigsky.com Editorial Assistant

BIG SKY – The Big Sky Water and Sewer District is enforcing a Level 1 water restriction for Big Sky. Signs were posted on July 1 around the area to remind residents of the restriction, which is due to water levels in the “fire water reserve” hitting a point of concern.

“Once we put those signs up we saw a significant drop in water use,” said Jim Muscat, operator at Big Sky Water and Sewer.

In the course of one minute, a sprinkler can put out 10 – 15 gallons of water, Muscat said. With 1,440 minutes in a day, that adds up to approximately 15,000 – 20,000 gallons of water if the sprinkler is left running.

Big Sky is a high-elevation desert, Muscat says, so keeping grass green requires more water and is more difficult than in places with high humidity. Because of this, he encourages landowners to properly landscape their yards with adequate dirt to hold water, and also to plant low-water vegetation.

This restriction is imposed in Big Sky every summer to ensure water conservation. The Level 1 restriction limits watering to every other day from 6 a.m. to 11 p.m.