For once, California’s terrible-to-moderate drought that caused tight statewide water-use restrictions has abated. The southern Golden State is turning green in mid-winter after swollen skies dumped a record amount of rain this month. Look at what’s happening here out in the Palm Springs desert!
And some northern parts have enough snow to extend the ski season into July.
It, of course, has nothing to do with the White House. But water-soaked rivers of atmospheric air from the north this month have delivered such a soaking to the thirsty state that with still a week yet to go, officials say California has received 18 trillion gallons of water this month alone.
That’s an amazingly large amount provided to the public with the absolute confidence that no one else is counting.
With more rains yet to come this week and month, Los Angeles has already received four inches. San Diego got 10.
Jazz Shaw thinks he’s had a lot of that white stuff fall on him in upstate New York this winter. Well, northern California’s Mammoth Mountain ski resort reports it’s received 37 feet of snow this winter. Shovel that, sucker! But come ski there til mid-summer.
Of course, to capture anxious eyeballs TV news reports are full of ominous threats of landslides as mountainsides in vast areas scorched by forest fires soak up tons of water with no roots to hold things in place.
The rains have also come with unusually cold nighttime temperatures — for southern California. Night-time thermometers in the south near the mid-thirties. Even in the gaps of sunshine many Californians have their parka hoods up as daytime temperatures plummet below 50! If you people in Minnesota can imagine such a thing.
Despite vast volumes of H20 arriving, California’s long-term dryness has been so severe that the state is still technically in drought condition. When the year’s vast Sierra snowpack melts by late summer, it will provide about 30 percent of the state’s water needs.
Over time the heavy rains will gradually replenish many of the state’s badly-depleted aquifers. But here’s an interesting fact: That water percolates down through the soil so slowly, it will take about one year for the liquid to soak down even a few hundred feet, drop by drop.
However, since this is a news site, we can’t leave you without a gloomy warning. All the water has already encouraged thousands of acres to push up lush new green growth. Which, come the next season in August and fall, will dry to a crisp just waiting to fuel the new fires you can watch on TV.