Colorado drought levels drop by half in a week; governor declares snowpack is “epic”
The Colorado Sun
Widespread drought across Colorado has improved dramatically in recent weeks, buoyed by a string of strong snowstorms that pounded the entire state this month.
The U.S. Drought Monitor reported on Thursday that there are no more extreme or exceptional drought conditions in the state, which plagued the Four Corners region after the dry 2018 winter and summer. Three months ago, nearly 30 percent of Colorado was listed under that status.
As of Thursday’s report, only 46.13 percent of the state was listed in some kind of drought status. That’s down from 83 percent last week.
Gov. Jared Polis, in a Facebook live video with snow experts, called the state’s snowpack “epic.”
“A generally very active weather pattern since February .. has left excellent snowpack, with much of the north half and east returning to normal conditions,” the U.S. Drought Monitor reported. “Severe drought shrank significantly in the southern part of the state.”
The Natural Resources Conservation Service reports the state’s snowpack is 141 percent of normal and at 205 percent of last year’s level.
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Breckenridge Ski Resort announced Wednesday morning it will remain open for two weekends of spring skiing and riding beyond the resort’s previously-scheduled closing day of this Monday, Memorial Day, May 27.