I was headed home this afternoon and the passing storm had cleared the air in our valley, exposing the Sierra Nevada near Yosemite National Park in all its glory. I believe we are looking at Mt. Hoffman on the right and Mt. Conness on the left (I am open to other opinions, maybe Matterhorn Peak on the left?). I was looking east from the latitude of Milnes Road east of Modesto. Lots of snow up high, growing fields below, and puddles and mud everywhere.
|What do you think? Conness or Matterhorn?|
So how can the drought maps be practically unchanged from several months ago? All of the state remains in drier than normal, and 40% of the state remains in "exceptional" drought. How can this be? It's because we fell so far behind. If the breadwinner in a household loses his or her income, the family will live off of savings for a while, and as unemployment drags on, the family starts using the credit cards. They get into a deep financial hole. When money starts to come in again, basic needs are once again met, but it takes a long time to build up the savings and pay off the credit cards. That's where we are in California right now. Water is returning, but the reservoirs are exceedingly low, and even worse, groundwater has been overdrafted like never before.
California Department of Water Resources: http://cdec.water.ca.gov/cdecapp/snowapp/sweq.action
U.S. Drought Monitor: http://droughtmonitor.unl.edu/Home.aspx