Is drought in California Finally coming to an end?

On 12 January 2017 California got some heavy rain from that storm and snow in the ski resorts in California, Nevada but 12 feet (3.658 meters) of snow which would be enough to cause the ski resort to close due to too much snow. With all that heavy rain California but would it be enough to end the drought?

News from USA Today

Rescue workers used boats and firetrucks to evacuate dozens of Northern California residents from their flooded homes Wednesday as a drought-busting series of storms began to move out of the region after days of heavy rain and snow. (Jan. 11) AP

The recent onslaught of rain and snow finally brought much-needed relief to northern California, ending a punishing five-year drought, federal officials said Thursday.

“Bye bye drought … Don’t let the door hit you on the way out,” tweeted the National Weather Service’s office in Reno, Nev., which monitors parts of the region.

Overall, less than 60% of California remains in drought for the first time since early 2013, according to the weekly U.S. Drought Monitor. A year ago, drought covered 97% of the state.

Stations up and down the Sierra mountain chain reported twice the amount of normal rain and snow for this time of year after snowstorms doubled the vital snowpack there that provides the state with much of its year-round water supply.

“It’s been a nice little miracle month after five bad years,” said meteorologist David Miskus of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, who wrote this week’s drought report.

More than a foot of precipitation fell in the Sierra in the past week alone, leaving most major reservoirs at or above average levels, Miskus said.

Strawberry Valley, Calif., received 20.7 inches ( 525.78 millimeters) of precipitation, and the Heavenly Ski Area near Lake Tahoe picked up a whopping 12 feet (3.658 meters) of snow. The excessive snowfall even led to closures of some ski resorts because of blizzard conditions and road closures.

However, much of southern California remains dry, though most not at the most severe level of drought. Only 2% of the state is in that category of “exceptional” drought: an area that stretches from Los Angeles to Santa Barbara. Across southern California, reservoirs and underground water supplies remain below normal, the Drought Monitor said.

It will take additional rain and snow this winter, plus another wet winter next year, to pull southern California out of drought, Miskus said.

A drought emergency issued in early 2014 will remain in place until Gov. Jerry Brown lifts or eases it, the Associated Press reported. That decision likely won’t come until the end of California’s winter snow and rain season.

Miskus called the latest drought report a “great start” to the West’s water year that runs through Sept. 30. California isn’t the only state seeing improvements: Many areas of the West, including parts of Nevada, Utah, Oregon, Idaho, Montana, Wyoming and Colorado, also made significant progress.

Nationwide, about 20% of the U.S. remains in a drought, primarily in parts of the southern Plains, the Southeast and the Northeast.

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