March 1st snowpack sits at 65% of normal

Third snow survey of the season taken Monday at Mt. Rose summit
Published: Mar. 1, 2021 at 4:51 PM PST
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INCLINE VILLAGE, Nev. (KOLO) - It’s a routine that hydrologist Jeff Anderson knows well. First he makes the trip to the SNOTEL site at Mount Rose summit. Then, he measures the snow depth. And finally, he weighs it to see how much water is in it.

“Right now 68 inches of snow depth with 21 inches of water content, and that is 65% of median for today,” Anderson said.

Anderson also says while the snow isn’t as deep as it was a month ago, there is 3 more inches of water in that snow, but also says a normal February should bring nine inches more.

Truckee Meadows Water Authority was on hand for today’s measurement to try and get a sense of how or if our water supply will be affected.

“We take the numbers that Jeff produces and a runoff forecast is produced based on the water in the snowpack,” said Bill Hauck of TMWA.

Hauck says the situation isn’t ideal, but it’s also not dire.

“We are not quite where we should be this time of year,” he said. “Fortunately for TMWA customers we aren’t dependent on one or two dry years.””

Hauck says that our reservoirs are currently at 42% capacity, and hopes for some march storms to add to them.

“It is a dry year,” he stated. “But we are OK.”

The final snow survey of the season will be the first week of April.

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