The answer to California's drought condition could be in this season's snow.
Authorities say, when that snow melts, the resulting water will go a long way to easing California's drought. However, state officials say it's too early to determine whether the water in California lakes, rivers and snow-covered hills might be sufficient to keep California drought-free through the summer. “Prior to the recent heavy precipitation this month, much of California was designated with extreme (D3) to exceptional (D4) drought,” Brad Pugh, a meteorologist for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration that assists with the map, wrote in an email. “The recent heavy precipitation and favorable snowpack resulted in 1 to 2-class improvements in the drought intensity level, but 12 to 24-month precipitation deficits continue. Additional improvements may be warranted during the next couple of weeks.”
Most of California is in a severe to extreme drought, according to the U.S. Drought Monitor. Only a small part of northern California along the Oregon border is in an "exceptional drought," the worst condition. That's down significantly from September, when 45% of the state was gripped by exceptional drought.