2015-2016 snowpack comparison: What a difference a year makes

Water and Climate Update
January 28, 2016

The Natural Resources Conservation Service produces this weekly report using data and products from the National Water and Climate Center and other agencies. The report focuses on seasonal snowpack, precipitation, temperature, and drought conditions in the U.S.

We are currently about halfway through the snow accumulation season in the West. A comparison of snowpack conditions now versus those of a year ago reveals some significant contrasts.
In the Cascades and Sierra, there was virtually little to no snow in 2015, whereas this year, snowpacks are near to above normal.
Similarly, snowpacks were well below normal in the Southwest (including the circled area of Arizona but also parts of Utah and Colorado to the north) in 2015, whereas now they are above normal.
In Wyoming, we see the opposite contrast. Near to above normal snowpacks in 2015 are well below normal this year. Open the report>>

2015 is By Far the Warmest Year on Record

2015 is By Far the Warmest Year on Record
USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service sent this bulletin at 01/21/2016 02:32 PM EST

Natural Resources Conservation Service

Weekly Water and Climate Update

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Weekly Water and Climate Update
January 21, 2016

The Natural Resources Conservation Service produces this weekly report using data and products from the National Water and Climate Center and other agencies. The report focuses on seasonal snowpack, precipitation, temperature, and drought conditions in the U.S.

From the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration: The January–December map of temperature anomalies shows that warmer-than-average temperatures occurred across the vast majority of the globe during 2015, combining to bring overall record warmth for 2015, at 0.90°C (1.62°F) above the 20th century average. This easily surpasses the previous record set just last year by 0.16°C (0.29°F). The global temperatures were strongly influenced by the strong El Niño conditions that developed during the year. The 2015 temperature also marks the largest margin by which an annual temperature record has been broken. Prior to this year, the largest margin occurred in 1998, when the annual temperature surpassed the record set in 1997 by 0.12°C (0.22°F). Incidentally, 1997 and 1998 were the last years in which a similarly strong El Niño was occurring. The annual temperature anomalies for 1997 and 1998 were 0.51°C (0.92°F) and 0.63°C (1.13°F), respectively, above the 20th century average, both much lower than the 2015 temperature. Read more>>

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Monday Morning Snowpack Report for May 13th 2013

Good morning everyone this is the17th Monday Morning Snow Report for the 2012-2013 snow season.  Last year at this time the state median dropped to 16% with a low of 9% and a high of 20% of median.  This year the state median is at 87% with a low of 31% and a high of 118% of median.   The snowpack is holding fairly steady for the Gunnison Basin.  Things are looking really good for the Colorado headwaters.

monday morning report 05152013

Paonia River Park Festival

The Delta Conservation District employees, John Miller, Dev Carey and Dawn Marah spent Thursday and Friday at the paonia river park with the riparian trailer teaching kids about the Colorado river system and how rivers work.  We had such a great group of kids that were very intelligent with  lots of questions!

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Other learning stations included Coal energy , solar energy, aquatic insects and Colorado water rights. 

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Exploring the Colorado

JohnWesleyPowell

We are now ready to start on our way down the Great Unknown. Our boats…are chafing each other, as they are tossed by the fretful river. We have but a month’s rations remaining. The flour has been resisted through the mosquito-net sieve; the spoiled bacon has been dried…the sugar has all melted and gone on its way down the river. We are three quarters of a mile in the depths of the earth, and the great river shrinks into insignificance, as it dashes its angry waves against the walls and cliffs that rise to the world above; they are but puny ripples, and we are but pygmies, running up and down the sands, or lost among the boulders. We have an unknown distance yet to run; an unknown river yet to explore. What falls there are, we know not; what rocks beset the channel, we know not; what walls rise over the river, we know not.

John Wesley Powell (describing his expedition down the untamed Colorado River in 1869)