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Idaho: Feb-buried

By: Jake Putnam
Published in Video on  March 01, 2019

Climbing in elevation to Mores Creek, there’s more than 10 feet of snow,  124 inches of snow. The average is 79 inches.

The all-time record for Mores Creek is 131 inches of snow in 1999. But Today’s measurement was the 4th highest in history and just 7 inches off that all-time high.

"February has been amazing," USDA hydrologist Ron Abramovich said. “It's snowed non-stop since February 2, and the storms keep coming. Currently the Boise Basin has 300-percent of its normal precipitation and there’s still six weeks left in the season!”

Based on the state Surface Water Supply Index, snowpacks are twice of average. “There are no expected water supply shortages expected across 99% of the state, The greatest concern, especially in southern Idaho, is too much snow and how to safely release all that water,” said Abramovich.

Todays snow survey revealed that today’s snowpack numbers are greater than the so-called snowpocalypse of 2017 but water content is not as heavy.

"There's not as much water content as 2017, so thats good news but Im sure when it melts there will be some concern," Abramovich said. “The snow this year is light, dry and fluffy. But there’s still five weeks of winter in the high country and if this trend continues there could be problems.”

Mores creek is running high because of warmer temperatures and rain. Lucky Peak reservoir is filling up fast.

"How much we get in the next month, or any spring rains as well, too. So that's where we'll see how rapidly the snowpack melts and fills our rivers and reservoirs,” said Abramovich.

Water releases have already started in the Little Wood Basin, and next week the same will happen in the Boise Basin. The Boise River is expected to start rising on March 6.

Snowfall since the water year started on October 1, 2018, is well above average across the state, and a record breaking 360% of average on the Big Wood Basin above Hailey. Other basins have three times their average.

“Except in the North, and that might be classic El Nino pattern. Even there, with storms missing them, they’re right around 100-percent of normal levels,” added Abramovich.


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