February Drought Information Statement for S.E. Colorado


The National Weather Service out of Pueblo reports that February 2013 was a cold and relatively wet month across the state, especially across the eastern mountains and immediate adjacent plains which saw above normal precipitation over the past month.  Despite some much needed precipitation across portions of the area, it was not widespread enough to improve the moderate to exceptional drought that has had its grip on south central and southeast Colorado over the past two years. 

With this in mind, the current U.S. Drought Monitor shows Exceptional (D4) conditions remain across Crowley, Otero, Kiowa, most of Bent and Prowers Counties as well as central and northeastern portions of Las Animas County.  Extreme (D3) drought conditions remain across extreme southeastern Bent County, extreme southern Prowers County and northern and eastern portions of Baca County.  Severe (D2) drought conditions are indicated for the remainder of Baca County. 

The latest Colorado Water Availability Task Force report indicates some municipalities and water providers are reporting storage levels below 50% of capacity. 

The latest CPC and VIC Soil Moisture calculations are showing improvement in conditions across portions of the Continental Divide and into the San Luis Valley, though continue to indicate drier to much drier than normal conditions across most of south central and southeast Colorado.  The largest deficits in soil moisture remain depicted across the southeast plains.

 February was colder than normal for Colorado Springs by 2.7 degrees, by 2 degrees in Pueblo and by 1.9 degrees in Alamosa.  Colorado Springs received 0.90 inches of precipitation and 10.6 inches of snow through February.  Pueblo received 0.48 inches of precipitation and 5.3 inches of snow and Alamosa received 0.15 inches of precipitation and 2.4 inches of snow through February. 

Statewide snowpack totals saw a nominal increase during February, but not enough to boost conditions to normal at this time.  As of March 1, the statewide snowpack was 73% of normal and 83% of this same time last year.  In the Arkansas Basin, the March 1 snowpack increased 8% to 71% of average overall and 79% of this same time lat year.  Overall reservoir storage continues to run well below average across southern Colorado.  The Arkansas Basin shows storage at the end of February was 55% of average overall and below the 62% of average a year ago at this time.  The most recent streamflow forecasts continue to point to well below normal volumes in all the major river basins. 

February precipitation totals for portions of southeast Colorado are in inches, comparing 2012 to 2013: 

                               2012                       2013
Eads                       0.49                        0.29
Campo                   0.00                        0.34
Haswell                 0.31                        0.18
Holly                      0.38                        0.42
J. M. Dam              0.21                        0.04
La Junta                 0.10                        0.09
Lamar                    0.19                        0.10
Las Animas            0.07                        N/A
Rocky Ford             0.11                        0.06
Springfield             0.63                        0.12
Walsh                    0.42                        0.21
Sheridan Lake        0.36                        0.68


Filed Under: AgricultureBusinesscommunityCountyEconomyFeaturedGranadaHollyLamarProwers CountyWeatherWiley


About the Author:

RSSComments (0)

Trackback URL

Comments are closed.