Tuesday, March 03, 2009

California water: where things stand

It's still raining off and on where I live, the reservoirs are filling up noticeably, and a National Weather Service forecaster told me today the rain should keep falling through this weekend. Here's where we are in the War On the Drought:

Final February rainfall
Here are the totals in selected valley towns for February rainfall, seasonal rainfall and comparisons to normal years, according to the National Weather Service. Totals are through Saturday, Feb. 28:
Redding: 8.94 inches (normal 5.49); season to date 17.33 (normal 23.62)
Sacramento: 5.07 inches (normal 3.54); season to date 11.21 inches (normal 13.38)
Modesto: 2.39 inches (normal 2.38); season to date 6.20 inches (normal 9.23)
Salinas: 3.52 inches (normal 2.48); season to date 9.12 inches (normal 9.30)
Fresno: 2.43 inches (normal 2.04); season to date 6.15 inches (normal 7.57)
Bakersfield: 1.71 inches (normal 1.16); season to date 3.78 (normal 4.22)

Valley rainfall
In some parts of California, the rain just keeps falling. Here are the rainfall totals for the following cities from Wednesday, Feb. 25 through Monday, March 2, according to the National Weather Service:
Redding: 1.21 inches
Red Bluff: 1.07 inches
Marysville-Yuba City: 1.50 inches
Napa: 0.90 inches
Sacramento (downtown): 1.16 inches
Modesto: 0.26 inches
Salinas: 0.67 inches
Merced: 0.35 inches
Fresno: 0.02 inches
Hanford: 0.13 inches
Bakersfield: 0.0 inches

Reservoir levels
Here are the percentages of capacity for California reservoirs as of midnight Monday, March 2, according to the Department of Water Resources California Data Exchange Center:
Trinity Lake: 44 percent
Shasta Lake: 47 percent
Lake Oroville: 41 percent
New Bullards Bar Reservoir: 63 percent
Folsom Lake: 47 percent
New Melones Reservoir: 50 percent
Don Pedro Reservoir: 60 percent
Lake McClure: 32 percent
Millerton Lake: 59 percent
Pine Flat Reservoir: 29 percent
Lake Isabella: 23 percent
San Luis Reservoir: 41 percent

Sierra snowpack
Here are the average snow water equivalents and percentages of normal for this time of year in the Sierra mountains as of Tuesday, March 3, according to the Department of Water Resources California Data Exchange Center:
Northern Sierras: 23 inches, 86 percent
Central Sierras: 22 inches, 83 percent
Southern Sierras: 20 inches, 84 percent
Statewide average: 22 inches, 84 percent

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