Colorado snowpack is at 751 percent. But the images truly tell the story.


You probably know at least some of the crazy stats by now.

Colorado is at 751 percent of its typical June 14th snowpack, as of Friday. In at least four of Colorado’s eight river basins, that figure is over 1,000 percent. In virtually every numerical sense, Colorado’s mid-June snowpack is off the charts. In 2018, Colorado suffered through one of its worst winters in recent memory, helping fuel a summer and fall drought and wildfires.

By mid-June 2018, virtually all of Colorado’s winter snowfall had already melted off.

But images truly tell the story about how dramatic the difference is between a year ago and now. Local meteorologist Dakota Smith posted these eye-catching earlier this week, showing the stark before-and-after contrast.

The Rocky Mountains have A LOT more snowpack this year, compared to 2018.

Take a look at it from a modeled snow water equivalent standpoint. This estimates the amount of water left from snowpack – and the differences are truly astounding.

Colorado June 14th snowpack 2019 vs. 2018.

The differences have every bit as much to do with 2019’s epic winter as much as 2018’s abysmal one. When you juxtapose two winters like that together, the visuals are truly incredible.

Statewide reservoir storage remains low, however, because of the lack of melting due to an unusually cool late spring and early summer season. That said, water flows are expected to rapidly increase in the next few days, according to the National Weather Service’s Boulder office.

From the NRCS June Snowpack News Release: "Reservoir storage remains generally low in anticipation of rising streamflows." (Near to) "below normal reservoir levels could help absorb above normal streamflows." Map courtesy of the NRCS. #cowx

The huge contrast between the last two winters wiped away Colorado’s nearly two-year drought. It’ll likely greatly reduce wildfire risk this summer, though it could increase flood risk in the next few months.




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