Well December looked very good as far as snowpack but as we moved into January it got very dry, and into mid February it is still very dry. The second snow survey is below average. Precipitation in the San Joaquin River Basin is 59% of the seasonal average in the southern Sierra Nevada. The snowpack normally provides about one third of the water for California. As of February 11th Friant storage was about 63% of capacity. The reservoirs above Friant are at 37% of full. 150CFS was being released into the Friant/Kern canal, nothing released into the Madera canal, and 408CFS was released into the San Joaquin River. This is 58CFS above the new normal river flow.
We still have no idea what the total cost is going to be to restore salmon to the San Joaquin River. At first they thought they could do the job for 400 million. It now seems it will be more than 800 million and some are saying it could cost 4 billion dollars. These numbers don’t include the cost to farmers that can’t use the water because we need to send it down the river in the hopes that salmon will want to come back south.
In the mean time, let’s all pray for more snow!