Drought-weary California is entering February with deeper snowpack than it has seen in four decades, reflecting a healthy boost in the state’s supply of water but also spurring concerns about dryness, flooding and other potential hazards in the months ahead.
Statewide Sierra snowpack was 205% of normal for the date on Wednesday, said officials with the Department of Water Resources during the second snow survey of the season.
Even more promising, snowpack was 128% of its April 1 average, referring to the end-of-season date when snowpack in California is typically at its deepest.
“Our snowpack is off to an incredible start, and it’s exactly what California needs to really help break from our ongoing drought,” DWR snow survey manager Sean de Guzman said. The state’s snowpack is currently outpacing the winter of 1982-83 — “the wettest year on record dating back about 40 years,” he said
Snow levels at Phillips Station near South Lake Tahoe, where the monthly surveys are conducted each winter, were 193% of average for the date.