Rain in the forecast: Is it too little, too late?


There’s a 60 percent chance of rain forecast for Tuesday, March 10, then an on-again, off-again chance for more precipitation for the next seven days starting Friday, March 13. Will Friday the 13th be lucky? It’s not likely in a dry year. And the 2019-2020 rainy season is shaping up as a dry year.

Here’s the rule of thumb in a dry year. If there’s a less than 50 percent chance of precipitation, it probably won’t rain; in a wet year, it probably will.

The National Weather Service-Hanford Station said the warmer temperatures earlier this week were 15 degrees above normal and more typical of early May. That current crop of fiddleneck is drying out quickly and won’t last without more rain soon. Wildflower season — that will require more rain too for any bloom whatsoever.

Whitewater rafting season? There won’t be enough water coming down the Kaweah drainage to float a commercial raft for more than a few days. 

Less than six inches of rain total by the end of March is not that unusual. The last time it happened was in 2014.

March 2014 ended with a paltry 5.95 inches, similar to this year. When the last drop came in June that year the season total was 8.92 inches.

There is a chance for more rain in April and May. Unfortunately, there won’t be much snow during the warmer months of the 2020 precipitation season.

Take a look at this video above that was recorded at Slick Rock on February 25, 2020. After watching this, take a close look the next time you happen by the area. The difference in less than two weeks is remarkable… just like the weather.

March 5 statewide snow totals: Snowpack is at 42 percent and 38 percent of the April 1 average. Water content is 11.0 inches. 

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