Update on CA drought. It’s been a few months since I checked. I heard that about middle of last year, drought was officially declared “Over” in NorCal. What about SoCal? The last monthly figures are for end of October, showing that of all the reservoirs supplying all of CA, were at: 71% of average, and 46% of capacity. The average number is the key. At the end of October, 2015, we were at: 58% of average. So, we’ve definitely come up way overall!
To get the SoCal numbers, you have to go to the daily averages, which don’t include the Colorado River basin, unfortunately. For selected CA reservoirs, as of 1/4/2017 (yesterday), we were at: 96.13% of average capacity.
So, is the drought over? To my mind, it’s over. The key reservoirs supplying SoCal are:
And, of course, the Colorado River basin reservoirs, that include Lake Mead, Lake Havasu and Lake Powell, and Lake Mojave, but we have no numbers for those that are recent.
Current levels in the above:
Pyramid Lake – 104% of Avg.
Lake Castaic – 73% of Avg.
Lake Perris – 47% of Avg.
Lake Isabella – 60% of Avg.
In the “Monthly” data, we can pull up data for the Colorado River basin, but those numbers are only from November, and are not conclusive as to the condition of the reservoirs. There are some other sites out there, namely, the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation (USBR), where you can get the daily, weekly, monthly data on the Colorado River basin reservoirs, but I have not figured out how to read their data yet (quickly) and convert it to numbers that match what we’re using here for California. Both systems seem to rate storage in the number of Acre Feet (one acre, one foot depth of water, approx. 326,000 gallons), but the daily report from the USBR is not easy to read, nor is it guaranteed devoid of errors.
The snowpack for the Sierras and the Klamath mountains is sure looking promising for us this year!