Monday, April 11, 2011
March precipitation boosts snowpack across the state
“With more snowy days than sunny ones in March, snowpacks increased measurably and now range from 100-140 percent of average for most
basins,” said Ron Abramovich, Water Supply Specialist with the Idaho NRCS. Idaho
Streamflow forecasts also increased. “With the good precipitation in March, most people would have thought the March streamflow volumes would be higher than they were,” Abramovich said.
“But most of the 60 plus stations that we use for water supply forecasting were in the 70-90 percent of average range.”
That’s because most of March’s precipitation fell as snow in the higher elevations. Streamflow forecasts range from near average in the Salmon basin to 150-160 percent for southern
's high desert rivers. Idaho
What does this mean for
’s water supply? Irrigation water supplies will be ample with most reservoirs holding enough supplies to last through the summer. Water is being released from some reservoirs to make room for the anticipated snow melt. Idaho
Most of southern
's reservoirs will fill except for the large storage facilities such as Idaho , Oakley and Salmon Falls . However, their water users will still have adequate irrigation supplies based on current storage and projected inflows. Bear Lake
Abramovich added, “How the snow melts and fills our rivers and lakes greatly depends on spring air temperatures and rain.” The three month extended forecast calls for wet, cool weather.
The Snow Survey and Water Supply Forecasting Program is developing a web-based tool that will allow users to access data and perform data analysis. Visit the National Water and
web site at http://www.wcc.nrcs.usda.gov/ to try out the tool and provide feedback on the tool’s operation by Climate Center June 3, 2011.
View April’s full report on snowpack, precipitation, runoff and water supply predictions at www.id.nrcs.usda.gov/snow and click on the ‘Water Supply’ link.
Posted by ClearTrib at 3:49 PM