The wet weather came just a few months too late in Colorado this season. While the state had a respectable winter with a few big storms (and plenty of skiers spending money), precipitation didn't really start cranking until mid April, when many ski areas were closing. Coloradans basically didn't see the sun in May there was so much rain, and across the U.S., May was the wettest on record. But to understand just how much the precipitation added to the high-elevation snowpack, check out the current SNOTEL snowpack map.
More on the California Drought:
The Worst Winter Ever? Sierra-at-Tahoe Closes Due to No Snow
Ski Industry Expert Says 31% of Today's Ski Areas Are Dying
Another Tahoe Resort Closes, This Time It's Sugar Bowl Resort
Inside the High-Dollar Fight to Save California Skiing
8 Excuses From the People Using the Most Water in California
While Tahoe and much of the Northwest haven't had a measurable snowpack since April 1 (hello, drought), Colorado's current snowpack levels are downright amazing for June. The SNOTEL map shows the current snow water equivalent as a percentage of normal. So just what does this map tell us? Whether you live in Oregon or Colorado, there's nothing normal about the current weather. Ideally, the map should show a sea of green (90-109%), but instead it's a study of extremes: all the snow has melted in some areas while Colorado is now at risk for flooding due to continued storms and high snowmelt. The worst part? Warm temperatures and rain has made avalanche danger a serious risk in most of Colorado. Sigh. Why can't all of this precipitation come when the temps are cold? You know, in January?
· National Weather and Climate Center [Official Site]
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