Snow and Rain and Still Drought Maintains its Evil Grip on Idaho
We’re not exactly buried in snow but I would’ve thought we were seeing some improvement in drought conditions. In some parts of Idaho, things are looking up (even if slightly). In southern Idaho, the drought maintains a good grip all along the state line. Last week’s map from the U.S. Drought Monitor shows severe drought from east to west. Locally, everything is south of Twin Falls to Nevada.
We still have an opportunity for some decent runoff in the spring thaw. After all, there is a solid snowpack (at the moment) in the mountains. Some areas along the panhandle are even worried about flooding this week.
The challenge here in the south is geography. South of the Snake River, water doesn’t soak into the soil with the same ease that it does north of the river. For those of us on the wrong end of the equation, spring rain is a better friend than heavy snow in the mountains. The latter is good for irrigation but not a long-term solution.
While we’ve been experiencing light snows and some freezing rain over the last ten days, the monitor explains our moisture has actually slowed in recent weeks. It’s a different story east of Idaho. Last week’s big storm left plenty of snow in eastern Montana and the Dakotas.
The Ogallala Aquifer in the Dakotas and Nebraska has been reduced by as much as 30 percent and is in desperate need of a recharge. In Arizona, serious restrictions are ahead this spring for groundwater users.
Keep praying for rain. Especially when we get to March.