This winter has been a good one so far, which is quite a relief after the disastrous winters of the two previous years. December brought a steady succession of storms and January has been good too, with both snow and rain maintaining a strong presence throughout the month. As noted here and here, the deep snow that fell at lower elevations was quickly melted by warmer temperatures and a strong rain. The creeks and rivers were engorged and all the water eventually found its way into our needy reservoirs. As of the time of this writing, Lake Siskiyou is just a few feet short of its capacity. Even more important, Shasta Lake has risen 50 feet since the beginning of January alone and will continue to rise as precipitation returns to the North State. In addition, the snow pack is already much, much healthier than it has been the last couple of years, which will sustain the state’s water supply when we enter the drier months.
Since today was a clear day, it presented the opportunity to take a good look at how the snow appears on the mountain. In years past, I have employed the zeitcam to provide some recent historical context to the condition on the mountain. I have not done this in quite a while but today seemed like a good time to do so once again. The last few years were pretty bleak and it is exciting to have a real winter once again.
Click on the links to view the conditions on Mount Shasta on January 26 over the last three four years.
2015 – Though deceptively snowy, this was nearly as bad as the previous year.
2014 – dramatic evidence of the drought’s impact on the mountain.
2013 – the most recent decent year, but it was still below average.
May the snow continue to fall…