drought state

100% of Colorado Remains in a Drought

Water year 2020 (10/1/19 – 9/31/20) started out promising with plentiful snowfall last winter and spring, but with the typical monsoon season nearly nonexistent, the state has been left in a severe drought.

According to the November 3 update from the National Integrated Drought Information System (NIDIS), 24.4% of Colorado is in an exceptional drought, 49.7% is in an extreme drought, 19.6% is in a severe drought, 6.3% is in a moderate drought and 0% of the state is abnormally dry. Collectively, 100% of Colorado remains in a drought. The map featured above shows the drought conditions on November 3.

The hot summer temperatures have extended through the fall leaving statewide reservoir levels 25% lower than they were this time last year. The dry, hot summer also fueled the devastating wildfires and lowered rivers and streams.

Denver Water supply and drought experts have been meeting regularly and keeping a close watch on weather forecasts and drought levels. You can do your part by conserving water as much as possible. Be sure to check for leaks especially with the temperatures changing from one extreme to another.

As of November 2, cumulative precipitation in the Colorado River Watershed was tracking at 49% of average and cumulative precipitation in the South Platte River Watershed was tracking at 45% of average.

Denver Water’s reservoir levels are a total of 80% full. This time last year they were 85% full. Denver Water’s supply reservoir contents as of November 2 are represented in the table below.


ReservoirPercent Full: CurrentPercent Full: Historical Median
Eleven Mile102%102%
Strontia Springs102%93%
Meadow Creek9%35%