The snowpack readings almost melted out completely in May. Near the end of the month, automated sensors indicated that snowpack levels were running just 12% of average in the Arkansas Basin and just 3% of average in the upper Rio Grande Basin.
Streamflow was generally below average across the Arkansas and upper Rio Grande Basins at the end of May. Soil moisture was generally below average across both basins. Overall reservoir storage levels were running near or below average. At the end of April, combined reservoir storage levels in the Arkansas Basin were around 94% of average, while combined levels in the upper Rio Grande Basin were around 70% of average.
Temperatures have generally been two to four degrees above average across southern Colorado during May. Precipitation has been below average for the same region in May with a few exceptions. Primary observation sites in Pueblo and Colorado Springs have been below average, but Alamosa has above average readings.
The outlook for June, July and August from the National Weather Service Climate Prediction Center indicates that precipitation will be at average estimates, temperatures will most likely be above average.
Precipitation levels for southeast Colorado for the month of May are as follows:
May 2011 May 2012
Eads 0.83 0.39
Haswell 1.56 0.20
Holly 0.66 0.31
John Martin Dam 1.02 0.15
La Junta 0.53 0.75
Lamar 0.67 0.22
Las Animas 0.69 n/a
Springfield 0.42 0.50
Walsh 0.48 1.11
Trinidad 0.95 0.75
Filed under: Agriculture, Business, City, County, Economy, Granada, Holly, Lamar, News, Weather, Wiley · Tags: Arkansas River Basin, National Weather Service, Reservoir Storage, snowpack, Upper Rio Grande Basin