The MRGCD is a handful of initials that stand for the Middle Rio Grande Conservancy District, established in 1925 to control flooding of the Rio Grande and to reclaim valuable cropland. It does this by controlling the river waters in a 150 mile stretch of four central countys: Sandoval, Bernalillo, Valencia and Socorro. The MRGCD distributes the water over 1200 miles of canals, drains and laterals to provide farmers and ranchers a timely and equitable share of the water. Right now the farmers are starting to prepare their fields for spring planting and the canals that are empty and dry today will soon be flowing with life giving water that has been shuttled to where it is needed by an elaborate system of dams, gates and pumps.
These four central countys do not hog all the Rio Grande's water; part of it continues on down-river to fulfill the needs of various communities and agricultural/ranching users.