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Colorado soils parched from weeks without rain or snow

carter chavez near black forest
Posted at 3:03 PM, Oct 08, 2020
and last updated 2020-10-08 19:31:00-04

The time period from January through September in 2020 has been the 2nd driest in Colorado since 1895. That's according to data from NOAA.

In the most recent stretch of weather, the past month has been very dry statewide. The last good dose of moisture came from the Labor Day snowstorm in early September. This means many areas are going on a month without significant rain or snow (significant meaning more than 0.01").

Days since last precipitation greater than a trace

This dry pattern in the weather has left its mark on drought conditions. Exceptional drought has increased from 2.64% of the state last week to 16.72% of the state this week. Most of the exceptional drought is on the western slope and mountains west of the Continental Divide.

Drought monitor released October 8, 2020 with data up to October 6, 2020.

For now, the front range of Colorado is holding onto moderate to severe drought, with the September snow being our saving grace.

The extended outlook shows the potential for the drought to linger through winter due to the formation of La Nina.