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Monday, April 13, 2015

Update on Year 4: It Never Rains in California

by Calculated Risk on 4/13/2015 10:03:00 AM

Another update:

This is the fourth year in a row with little rain or snow in the mountains. California is the largest agricultural state, and an ongoing drought could have an impact on food prices - and on the economy.

7 Day Precipitation
This graphic shows the National Weather Service 7 day precipitation forecast for the U.S.

California will be dry for at least another week.

Here are a few resources to track the drought. These tables show the snowpack in the North, Central and South Sierra. Currently the snowpack is about 8% of normal for this date.

And here are some plots comparing the current and previous years to the average, a very dry year ('76-'77) and a wet year ('82-'83). 2014-2015 is the driest year on record.

For Pacific Crest Trail and John Muir Trail hikers, I recommend using the Upper Tyndall Creek sensor to track the snow conditions. This is the fourth dry year in a row along the JMT, and the concern this year is lack of water - not too much snow on the passes.