NewsCovering Kern County


Drought conditions continue for Kern County

February ends on a very dry note
Drought Monitor Report February 25, 2021
Posted at 6:47 AM, Feb 25, 2021
and last updated 2021-02-25 09:51:03-05

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. — The weekly Drought Monitor Report was released early Thursday morning and it remains the same, but that's not good news.

As drought conditions continue for the state, here in Kern County the valley remains in moderate drought with severe drought status in the mountains from the Kern River Valley to the Tehachapi area. The Mojave Desert, including the Ridgecrest area, are classified as extreme drought.

Read the full report here, but this is how this morning's release pertains to us: "Ample Pacific moisture and storms dropped decent amounts of precipitation on the Northwest, especially Washington, Oregon, northern California, Idaho, western Montana, and western Wyoming, with lesser amounts across northern Nevada, central Utah, northern and southern Colorado, and parts of New Mexico. The active Pacific storm track continued to benefit Washington, Oregon, and northern California, along with most northern and central mountains in the West. February 23 basin average SWEs continued to increase toward normal, with most basins in Washington, Oregon, Idaho, western Montana, and northwestern Wyoming at or above normal SWE. Accordingly, some slight improvements were made where recent surplus precipitation fell and the basins had SWEs exceeding 100%. With improvements made last week in northern Nevada and central Utah, and these areas still impacted from the failed Southwest summer monsoon, no changes were made this week, although the basin SWEs were up to 70-80% of normal as of Feb. 23. The light precipitation in New Mexico and eastern Arizona was not enough for any improvements this week. In California’s Sierra Nevada, the Feb. 23 SWE stood at: North - 67%; Central - 72%; South - 50%; statewide summary - 65%. In contrast, central Nevada missed out on the recent storms, and with the failed summer monsoon, conditions have gotten worse, thus D4 was expanded to include central Nevada. In addition, the Impact Lines were adjusted to show that more of the drought in the West was long-term (L) since recent storminess had pushed the short-term indices into various wet categories, although the much drier in the short-term Southwest remained in SL."