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NIDIS Intermountain West
Regional Drought Early Warning System
November 29, 2016


Current U.S. Drought Monitor Depiction


Recommended Changes

Summary: November 29, 2016

Last week, the UCRB received another nice shot of snowfall.  Most of the basin received between 0.50 and 2.00 inches of new precipitation, which is a near normal week for this time of year.  The San Juan Mountains in sw Colorado saw 2.00 to 3.00 inches.  Southwestern Wyoming and northeastern Utah saw less precip last week, up to 0.50 inches.  The new snow helped the snowpack in the UCRB, however most basins are still below 60% of normal snowpack for this time of year.  Most basins will need at least 110% of normal precipitation for the rest of the snow accumulation season to reach normal peak snowpack.

East of the Continental Divide saw less precipitation, with most of the area receiving less than 0.25 inches for the week.  Isolated areas in Adams, Arapahoe, Elbert and Teller counties saw between 0.50 and 1.00 inches last week.  Pueblo, Crowley, Otero and Bent counties also saw beneficial amounts between 0.50 and 1.00 inches.  Snowpack east of the divide is struggling as well, hovering around 50%.  The Rio Grande basin is a little better at 65% of normal snowpack for this time of year.

Even with the snowfall in the mountains, warmer than average temperatures were seem through most of the basin and eastern Colorado.  With this being the end of the month, the area has seen another month with above normal temperatures.  

The current outlook is showing the UCRB and Colorado receiving less than 1.00 inch of new precip for the next week.  Two weeks out shows a possibility for cooler than average temperatures, and higher chances of normal or slightly above normal precipitation.  The southern portion of the basin is seeing probabilities of lower than normal precipitation.

Recommendations

UCRB: Status quo is recommended.  Even though the basin received another shot of snow, this is not yet enough to make up for the long-term deficits and snowpack is still very low.

Eastern Colorado: Status quo is recommended.  The only area to receive precipitation in eastern Colorado, like the basin, did not see enough to make up for those deficits.  No need for degradations in areas that missed precipitation, yet.  If areas of D0 in ne Colorado remain dry for another few weeks, D1 expansion may be justified.

 

 

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