WEATHER

Utah’s winter water update

Dec 21, 2023, 9:00 AM | Updated: Jan 9, 2024, 12:22 pm

Crews continue to clear snow from trails at Deer Valley Resort on June 22, 2023. (Deer Valley Resor...

Crews continue to clear snow from trails at Deer Valley Resort on June 22, 2023. (Deer Valley Resort)

(Deer Valley Resort)

 
SALT LAKE CITY — It’s been a dry winter so far, but last year’s water is the gift that keeps on giving. Utah reservoirs are 20% higher than average thanks to leftovers from last winter. Our soil moisture is looking good, too.  Higher soil moisture increases runoff in the spring.
 
“It’s sort of a good news, bad news situation. Our snowpack hasn’t been what we hoped it would be by this time.  But we are still a ways away from peak snowpack,” said Division of Water Resources Drought Coordinator, Laura Haskell.
 
As of today, we still have 105 days left in the season and there’s still time to get a lot more snow.
 
Statewide Snow Water Equivalent (SWE), which determines the amount of water available in the snow, is slightly below normal for this time of year. This is especially true in Southern Utah. By this time, there is usually more snow in the higher elevations in the southern part of the state.
 
The Division of Water Resources reassures us that even if Utah doesn’t have another record-breaking year, the state will still be in pretty good shape if people are careful.
 
“It will take all of our efforts to conserve what we have,” Haskell said.
 
Haskell urges people to be water-wise in both winter and summer. This time of year, people can check leaking pipes and running toilets. In the warmer months, people can be conservative when watering their lawns.

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Utah’s winter water update