Fish pond a puddle in northwest Nevada’s driest year ever
RENO, (AP) – A pond that’s the centerpiece of Carson City’s Riverview Park is little more than a mucky puddle these days surrounded by scores of dead and dying carp.
”Typically we see dry conditions this time of year, but this is the worst and longest we’ve seen since the wetlands were created,” Carson City Parks Superintendent Scott Fahrenbruck told the Nevada Appeal.
It also may be the driest it’s been in northwest Nevada since record-keeping began 130 years ago – and things just got worse in July.
Ten months into the water year, a mere 2.04 inches of moisture have dampened Reno. The record low was the 1923-24 water year, which saw 2.59 inches of rain in the Oct. 1-Sept. 30 period, according to state climatologist John James. Average is 7.53 inches.
”We’re not in very good shape,” James said on Thursday. ”The fall seasonal storms are critical. November’s critical. December’s really critical.”
Last month saw just 0.07 inch of rain at the Reno airport while the average temperature of 74.4 degrees was 2.4 degrees above normal.
”Another warm and dry month with well above normal evaporation,” James said. ”According to the National Drought Mitigation Center, it’s one of the worst in the country.”
The center’s drought monitor shows an area of extreme drought – only exceptional drought is worse – ranging in Nevada from about Winnemucca and McDermitt east to the California line and south to well below Minden. The same swath of dryness includes extreme northern California and a good chunk of southern Oregon.
The only other places that are as dry are in southeastern Idaho to west central Wyoming and a spot around San Angelo in west Texas.
On the Net:
National Water and Climate Center: http://www.wcc.nrcs.usda.gov
Federal Drought Monitor: http://enso.unl.edu/monitor/index.html
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