Snow cover in the Golden State has grown meteorologically in recent weeks, and more snow is expected to blanket the California Sierra in the coming days.
State snow cover increased to 18.4 inches on Thursday from just 11.3 inches at Christmas. That’s about 70% of the amount of snow we typically accumulate by the end of the snow season on April 1st. This doesn’t sound like a lot of snow, but a winter storm can make him 2 feet of snow at a time. It’s called “snow water equivalent”. This is the depth of water that would cover the ground if all the snow had melted.
And it could rise again this week. The National Weather Service is forecasting up to 20 inches of fresh snow on the Tahoe Basin’s largest peaks by Friday morning as a series of ongoing storms ravage the state.
But what does this mean for the California drought? it’s clear Heavy rains in the early days do not always lead to heavy snowfall at the end of the season. Of the seven years in the past 20 years in which the state recorded above-average snowfall on January 5, only four ended the snow season with above-average snowfall.
And many of the state’s reservoirs are still quite below A typical level for this time of year. Without steady rainfall over the next few months, drought could hit again by next summer.
But this season is already an outlier. On Thursday, California had its second heaviest snowfall for this time of year in the last 20 years. Only 2007 surpassed this year’s harvest. And with so much snow forecast, we may still catch up this year.
https://www.mercurynews.com/2023/01/05/look-at-how-much-californias-snowpack-has-grown-in-the-last-12-days-is-the-drought-over-yet/ California snowfall is approaching 20-year highs. Is the drought coming to an end?