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Snowfall hits 100-percent of the annual average in California’s Central Sierra mountains


Mother Nature continues to deliver.

With more than two months left in season, snowfall in the Central Sierra mountains of California has already reached 100% of average for an entire year, climatologists from UC Berkeley announced Monday.

“A fresh 3″ (7.5 cm) of new #snow over the last 24 hours takes our season total to 360″ (914 cm, 30 feet)!,” the Central Sierra Snow Laboratory tweeted, along with a chart showing snow accumulation so far this season.

April 1 is when snowpack is typically at its highest, so measurements are compared to the April 1 average, in addition to averages for specific dates along the way.

Snowfall accumulation chart as of Jan. 30, 2023 (Central Sierra Snow Lab)

Despite the weather pattern turning noticeably drier since the monster storms that ushered in the new year, snowpack continues to be strong across the state.

The California Department of Water Resources says statewide snow water equivalent is 210% of normal for Jan. 30 and 129% of the April 1 average.

The Southern Sierra is an impressive 255% of average, the Central Sierra is 211% and the Northern Sierra/Trinity region is 172%.

California snowpack map. Jan. 30, 2023 (California Department of Water Resources)

The next official measurement at Phillips Station near Lake Tahoe is scheduled for Wednesday.

While no one is saying this wet winter will wipe out California’s drought, it has made a significant impact.

The latest U.S. Drought Monitor map shows a large stretch of California’s Central Coast has moved from “moderate” or “severe” drought conditions to “abnormally dry.”


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