Sat November 17, 2012
Winter Precipitation Outlook

As Winter Approaches, Colorado Has Precipitation Deficit

We’re well past this year’s dry Summer, and into late Autumn – but the changing of the season doesn't fix the drought. Despite recent moisture, the entire state of Colorado remains in some level of drought.

Taking a look at the U.S. Drought Monitor Map released this week, there has been little improvement across the state over the last 6 weeks (The map is updated every week). State Climatologist Nolan Doesken says most of Colorado is in a precipitation deficit and will need an average to above average winter to return to near normal levels.

However, he’s not sure one is in store. 

The US Seasonal Drought Outlook.
Credit NOAA / Department of Commerce

“The weather patterns haven’t shed their clues very well. I think a few months ago we would have predicting a pretty good winter, but the conditions have sort of wavered on that and we’re a little less optimistic.”

Forecasters say Colorado and much of the western U.S. will remain in a persistent drought through early next year. The National Winter Outlook says the region has an equal chance of seeing above, normal, or below average winter precipitation.