Ag Today March 26, 2018

Powerful storm brought much-needed rain to California

Associated Press

March 23, 2018 02:44 PM

Updated March 23, 2018 02:45 PM

The storm that drenched California this week brought much-needed rain to the state, which has been slipping back into drought conditions due to a dry winter that only turned wet and snowy this month.

Preliminary storm data Friday showed some stunning totals for the three-day storm, including more than 10 inches (25 centimeters) of rain at some locations in the Sierra Nevada and on the central coast, and 31 inches (79 centimeters) of snow at Tuolumne Meadows in the Sierra.

In coastal Santa Barbara and Ventura counties northwest of Los Angeles, where drought conditions have been characterized as severe to extreme, many locations reported well over 5 inches (13 centimeters) of rain from the storm.

Any addition to the Sierra snowpack is welcome: Runoff from the 400-mile-long (644-kilometer-long) range supplies about a third of the water used by Californians each year, but the most recent measurement found its water content to be less than 40 percent of normal.

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