Warm and dry start to February

The forecast for the first week in February calls for daily high temperatures hovering close to the 60ºF mark and no snow or rain in Reno-Sparks. As winter ticks away, the chances of recovering the Tahoe-Truckee mountain snowpack to average by April 1 dim.

Most higher elevation NRCS (National Resource Conservation Service) stations in the Tahoe and Truckee basins are reporting between 25 and 50 percent of average for the period of record (POR). The strongest storms that produce winter precipitation in the form of snow and rain typically occur December through March. Because of the dry December and well below average January precipitation, the Tahoe and Truckee River basins would need to have more than average snow and rain for February and March to end up with an average snowpack by April 1. The long-range forecast for February, however, calls for continuing dry conditions. As far back as early December, the National Weather Service had forecast that this winter would be warmer and drier than the average. Unfortunately, that forecast has been right-on. We can always hope for a turnaround.

Snow water equivalent compared to the average over the period of record

Snow water equivalent compared to the average over the period of record

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About Dennis Ghiglieri

My concern for the Truckee River grew over the years. It started with picking up trash and supporting better water quality. I helped create the "living river"plan with other citizens on the Community Flood Coalition; a plan to reduce flood impacts to infrastructure through river restoration and protection of the floodplain. I understand how critical the Truckee River is to the environment – and economy – of our entire region. I'm hoping that through these pages we can all understand our connection to the Truckee River and why we need to protect it.