drought in Colorado

Drought Status

According to the February 25th update from the National Integrated Drought Information System (NIDIS), 3.3% (south-east and south-west region) of Colorado is in a severe drought, 39.5% is in a moderate drought and 27.1% of the state is abnormally dry. Twenty-nine percent of the state, the north-central region, remains drought free. Collectively, nearly 70% of Colorado is registering on the drought monitor. The map featured above shows the drought conditions on February 25th.

So far, Water Year 2020, defined by October 2019 to February 2020, is off to an average start. Reservoir storage remains near to above normal: 85% to 127% of average in all major basins and 105% of average statewide.

As of February 24th, cumulative precipitation in the Colorado River Watershed was tracking at 111% and cumulative precipitation in the South Platte River Watershed was tracking at 124% of average.

After a nice, calm and relatively warm January, globally the warmest January on record, statewide snowpack was boosted by February’s snowstorms. Most of the state was colder than average all through February.

On February 25th, statewide snowpack was at 111% of average. Based on NRCS data from February 25th, snowpack in the Colorado River Valley is tracking at 119% of average and the South Platte River Valley is tracking at 130% of average.