A Wet Week Plus Full Reservoirs Should Put the Northwest in Relatively Good Shape For This Summer


The Pacific Northwest has a Mediterranean climate, with wet winters and very dry summers.

Thus, it is important for us to approach summer with full reservoirs, ample mountain snowpack (which provides melt water during the summer and early fall), and a nice late spring dousing to wet down the vegetation and soils.

And it looks like we will have all three.

As most of you know, we have had a dry spring so far, with the eastern part of the state receiving 0-3 inches less than normal and larger deficits in the west (as much as 9-16 inches below normal)–see below.

On the other hand, there is good news.  With a relatively cool, wet, and snowy La Nina late winter the key reservoirs serving our region are looking good.   The critical Yakima River reservoir system, so important to agriculture in eastern Washington, now possesses above-normal water levels (see below, blue is this year and red…

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