You'd Think There'd Be More Snow

We here in near-coastal California have been getting more than what seems like our fair share of rain recently.  Perhaps my perceptions of the local weather patterns have simply been conditioned on the very dry weather we’ve experienced over the last several years.  When I checked on the snow water content in the Sierra, I expected this year to fall on the far wet end of the scale.  Much to my surprise (and horror), when I checked this morning, I saw that this year appears to be only a little wetter than average (and drier than average for the first part of the winter).  Of course, maybe “a little wetter than average” is the new wet year in the more arid climate cycle of the North American West.  Just inspecting the plots, it is clear that there is still plenty of time for snow-water content to increase.  The wettest year on record (1982-1983) has a big bulge in May.  However, it had built steadily for the months preceding, unlike this year.

PLOT_SWC.2010

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