NewsCovering Colorado


Over 90% of Colorado under severe drought

Posted at 3:46 PM, Aug 27, 2020
and last updated 2020-08-27 21:14:40-04

The US Drought Monitor is updated every Thursday morning, taking in data through Tuesday of that week.

At the beginning of August in Colorado, the southern half of the state was in several months into its battle with severe and extreme drought. Northern Colorado was beginning to see conditions drying up and drought increasing.

Drought Monitor August 4, 2020

On August 4, 58% of the state was under severe drought, and 26% under extreme.

The weather pattern for most of August was a ridge of high pressure, which kept dry and hot air over the state. High pressure in general causing sinking air that compresses and is stable. This meant rain was hard to come by.

Multiple days of record heat were recorded this month. Colorado Spring tied or broke the daily record high on August 12th, 15th, 21st, and 22nd. Pueblo saw record highs on the 15th and 22nd. And Denver broke records on the 9th, 11th, and 18th.

This month also saw the growth of multiple wildfires, including the expansion of the Pine Gulch Fire, the Grizzly Creek Fire, The Cameron Peak Fire, and the Williams Fork Fire. Westerly winds and the high pressure kept the smoke blanketed over the state.

These conditions have helped to exacerbate drought this month.

Now, 93% of the state is under severe drought, including Teller county and Colorado Springs for the first time this year. 36% is under extreme drought.

The growth of severe drought conditions this month is an increase of 35%.