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February 2022 Water Supply Outlook Report released

BOISE, Idaho (KIFI) – The Natural Resources Conservation Service in Idaho has released the February Water Supply Outlook Report for the 2022 water year.

After the first week of January, meaningful storms have been few and far between. While less than desirable January precipitation has curbed some of the previous optimism for a drought-busting snowpack and subsequent efficient runoff season, the snowpack is still near or above normal in nearly all of Idaho’s streamflow generating mountains.

“While temperature inversions and cloud cover dominated January for most of Idaho’s lower elevation valleys, the mountains largely received the opposite: slightly warmer than normal temperatures and many ‘bluebird’ days,” said Daniel Tappa, Hydrologist-Data Collection Officer for NRCS Snow Survey in Idaho. “Warmer temperatures combined with little snowfall throughout January has resulted in an unusually dense snowpack for this time of year. This is important because snowpack density is closely related to the potential for snowmelt to begin; the higher the density the closer the snowpack is to reaching an isothermal state, which happens before widespread snowmelt can occur. The good news is the sun angle is still relatively low in the sky, meaning there’s relatively low energy input to the snowpack. Additional snowfall will also help to prevent earlier than normal snowmelt.”

February 1 streamflow forecasts favor above normal spring and summer runoff for the vast majority of Idaho. This is likely because of the healthy water year total precipitation and current snowpack that remains above normal in most areas. However, if the current dry spell continues during February, we can expect significant decreases in streamflow forecasts by March 1.  Streamflow, snowpack, and precipitation data for each basin can be accessed on the NRCS Idaho Snow Survey web page.

For information on specific basins, streams, and reservoirs, you can view the full report below.

Article Topic Follows: Idaho

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