Sierra Snowpack Hits Two-Decade High

The Sierra snow pack is at its highest level in more than 20 years.  That is the reading from today's measurement by the Department of Water Resources at Phillips Station off Highway 50, near Lake Tahoe.  It is thanks to one of the wettest Januaries on record, complete with atmospheric rivers and blizzards.  On January 1st, the snow pack only measured 64-percent of average.

California water managers say Sierra Nevada snow drifts are at a drought-busting 153 percent of average, with the most snow recorded since 1995.

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State water managers poked rods into drifts as high as tree branches Thursday to measure the snow pack.

The overall snow pack is vital to the state, providing a third of water supplies year-round.

This year's bountiful snow pack came thanks to one of the stormiest Januaries in decades. The storms brought three-fourths of the state's normal yearly precipitation in just a few weeks.Gov. Jerry Brown is expected to wait until the end of the rainy season, in April, to decide whether to lift a drought-emergency in place since 2014.


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