Today we are seeing light snow in Denver and the Rockies, so hopefully the snowpack rebounds or at least stabilizes as a result. The March 17th times-series snowpack summaries for the South Platte River Basin and the San Miguel, Dolores, Animas and San Juan River Basins are shown below and to the left. The South Platte has recently recovered to about 100 percent of normal for this date, while the Southwest Basins have been stalled out at about 15 inches of snow-water equivalent since early February. In the Arkansas River Basin, the snowpack has dropped to about 83 percent of normal. The good news is that Pueblo Reservoir is reported at 87 percent full, more than 70,000 acre-feet above the average storage level of Pueblo Reservoir on St. Patrick’s Day.
I was in California last week and it was raining, which made me curious about the California drought. Their four-year drought is easing, but only a little during the current rainy season. The map above shows that about 35 percent of California remains in exceptional drought, and about 55 percent remains in Extreme or Exceptional Drought. As bad as that is, it is an improvement: in October of 2014 about 82 percent of California was in Extreme or Exceptional drought. Current weather forecasts include rain and snow in the Sierras for the weekend of March 19th. — Gregg Ten Eyck, PE – President
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