Significant Precipitation Avoids Areas Struggling with Drought

Most areas received some sort of precipitation, though not enough to start digging the West and some portions of the South out of drought

Published on: Feb 6, 2014

Most of Arizona and New Mexico received little if any precipitation during the past seven days.

The mountainous terrain of western and central Colorado received moderate to heavy precipitation during the past week, while the high plains of eastern Colorado generally received less than a half-inch of precipitation. As time is needed to evaluate regional impacts across the Southwest, Artusa said, no changes were made to the depiction this week.

Though several inches of precipitation fell over the northern one-half to two-thirds of California this week, significantly more precipitation will be needed to justify improvement with the depiction, Artusa said. The precipitation received this week only keeps the snowpack/water supply from falling further behind.

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Reservoirs continue to go down. Last year at this time, 34.3 inches of precipitation fell, while the average to date is 26.4 inches.

The City of Cambria, on the coast in central California, is implementing water restrictions for residents, while many cattle owners are selling off their herds due to lack of feed and water, Artusa reported.

The higher elevations of western Washington and western Oregon received 2-5 inches of precipitation (liquid equivalent, locally heavier) during the past week. As is the case with California, Artusa said, significantly more precipitation will be needed to overcome longer-term deficits.

Finally, in western Montana, the valley areas have been fairly dry recently, while the mountainous areas have received significant precipitation. Given support from the latest short-term and long-term drought blends, and the recent dryness, the drought-free area in southwestern Montana was downgraded to abnormal dryness.

Significant Precipitation Avoids Areas Struggling with Drought

View the change map and other drought tools on the U.S. Drought Monitor website.

News source: U.S. Drought Monitor