Double the Average Snowpack: An update on California’s conditions

After three years of a historic drought, producers in the Golden State are now experiencing a diminished or even eradicated drought depending on what part of the state they are in, as you can see on the latest drought monitor.

Snowpack has reached 45 inches or higher depending on location, which is close to double the average amount for this time of year. Even if no more snow falls this month, snowpack will be 170 percent of average starting April 1st.

As for reservoir storage, California has gained almost nine million acre feet of water and that does not include snow melt yet!

USDA Meteorologist, Brad Rippey, says farmers are on track for a good runoff season ahead, but more rain would be welcomed in the Northwest.

“A couple of things we would welcome in the West would be more spring precipitation in the Northwest where we have seen that drying trend. Another thing that would be really important for maximizing the benefit of all the snow that has fallen would be a snow melt season that is very slow. A very gradual melt means we would benefit if it stays cold like it has been much of the winter and how it currently is now. With the cold weather, the slowly melting snow that maximizes the capture to reservoirs and for soil moisture replenishment,” says Brad Rippey.


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