Latest storm boosts Utah's snowpack

Published 02/11 2014 04:44PM

Updated 02/11 2014 05:09PM

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah (ABC4 – Utah) Multiple storms this past weekend brought much needed moisture to Utah’s snowpack.

The northern Utah mountains are now at 100% of normal, meaning they are right at average.

Central Utah is still below average, but received a much needed boost with the moisture (see graph.)

The storms this past weekend brought seven inches of water.

As a water supply manager you look for how much water is in the snow,” said Brian McInerney, a hydrologist with the National Weather Service in Salt Lake City.

“It was heavier, denser snow,” said McInerney. “That's why we have such an avalanche problem today, but it was just what we needed - a very wet storm.”

Chief Meteorologist Jim Kosek said that is because of where this storm originated.

“It’s called the Pineapple Express,” said Kosek. “Moisture that originates near the Hawaiian islands is able to move eastward with the steering winds and because we don’t have any appreciable land mass until you hit California, it’s an excellent opportunity to plenty of rain and snow across the Beehive State.”

While getting back to average is good news, after two dry winters Utah needs an exceptional year to get back on track – snowpack at 120%.”

McInerney said that will be difficult to reach.

“Are we going to get 120% of runoff by spring? Probably not - that would be a far fetched number to get,” said McInerney.

By the numbers:

Central Utah/Salt Lake Region

Average Snow Water Equivalent February 11 – 15.7”

2014 Snow Water Equivalent February 11 – 12.3”

2013 Snow Water Equivalent February 11 – 13.5”


Northern Utah/Bear River Drainage

Average Snow Water Equivalent February 11 – 12.8”

2014 Snow Water Equivalent February 11 – 12.9”

2013 Snow Water Equivalent February 11 – 10.3”

See graphs for additional snowpack information.
Northern Utah - see Bear River Drainage map 
Central Utah/Salt Lake Region - see Six Creeks Headquarters map

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