FRISCO — Above-average reservoir storage and forecasts for a wet spring season could help keep Colorado out of drought trouble — even though statewide precipitation has been below average for the entire water year to-date, starting last October. As of mid-March, 40 percent of Colorado was classified as being in severe drought conditions, with only 25 percent of the state drought-free. Continue reading “Climate: Drought ‘donut’ circles Colorado”→
April 1 snowpack the 3d-lowest in 30 years; state preps for low runoff and summer streamflows
By Bob Berwyn
FRISCO — Colorado water users need to prepare for below-average spring and summer runoff and streamflow based on the all-important April 1 snow survey, which showed a startling drop in the state’s snowpack since early March.
After tallying readings from automated SNOTEL sites and manual snow surveys, the federal Natural Resources Conservation Service said the water content of the snowpack is just 64 percent of average, down from 89 percent at the beginning of March.
FRISCO —Usually November is the best time to spot the great wave clouds that build up over the Continental Divide. But there’s a secondary season in March, when once again, upper-level winds shift. As those great rivers of air meet the wall of the Continental Divide, the sky often blossoms. This set includes a few shots going back into winter, but most of the images are from the past few weeks, showing the transition of the seasons. For daily photography updates, follow our Instagram feed, and visit our online gallery for an amazing selection of prints and greeting cards.
FRISCO — OK, so I didn’t manage to get a good shot of the eclipsed moon this morning. It was mostly obscured by clouds, but I did watch the lunar orb emerge from the Earth’s rusty shadow from the deck. That means I’m looking forward to seeing all the pics of eclipse streaming across the interwebs this morning. Even without the eclipse, there have been a few dramatic moments in Summit skies the past few days, including the first real wave cloud formation, a sure sign that upper level winds are shifting toward fall and winter conditions, and the last few remnant patches of autumn leaves. Continue reading “Morning photo: More …”→
FRISCO — For a few weeks every summer, Colorado’s weather pattern experiences a seasonal shift that gives us a taste of the tropics. As big high pressure areas move around, moisture often streams into our mountains from the south, keeping the air moist and temperatures relatively warm at night, since the clouds, or even just the moist air, act as a blanket and prevent the day’s warmth from radiating back into space at night. It may be hard to believe, given how much snow we get in the middle of winter, but our monsoon season is actually the wettest time of year in Colorado. And, of course, it’s one of the best times to snap pictures of dramatic cloudscapes. Continue reading “Morning photo: Monsoon season!”→
FRISCO — This year’s brewing El Niño may be dampened by widespread warm sea surface temperatures across the Pacific Ocean, according to weather experts. Specifically, ocean temperatures across the far western Pacific have remained so warm that one of the key ingredients for a full-strength El Niño is missing — a significant difference in temperatures between the western and Eastern Pacific.
But so far this summer, warmer than average temperatures are spread across the Pacific from east to west. Just last week, the National Climatic Data Center announced that the average global temperature for June was the warmest on record, driving in large part by warm oceans. Continue reading “Climate: What’s up, El Niño?”→
FRISCO — Another month of above-normal snowfall has put Breckenridge on track for its fourth-snowiest winter on record, according to National Weather Service observer Rick Bly, who measured 37.4 inches at his backyard gauge.
That makes it the 10th-snowiest March, a month that sees average snowfall of 25.5 inches. Bly said precipitation has been above average for four straight months. During the current water year, which started Oct. 1, only November saw slightly below normal snowfall. Precipitation (the combination of melted snow and rain) for the water year to date is already at 15.2 inches, nearly six inches more than average. Continue reading “Breck snowfall above average 4 months in a row”→