Colorado weather update: 98 percent of the state is abnormally dry or in moderate drought

Nearly the entire state is feeling the effects of months of below-average precipitation.

Colorado's drought status as of Nov. 10, 2016.

Nearly the entire state is feeling the effects of months of below-average precipitation.

Colorado's drought status as of Nov. 10, 2016.
Colorado’s drought status as of Nov. 8, 2016.

About 68 percent of Colorado is “abnormally dry,” while 31 percent is in moderate drought, according to the U.S. Drought Monitor. The Front Range and plains are getting the worst of it, with a drought spreading across the greater metro area for about the last month.

Moderate drought can damage crops and pastures and may begin to affect water supplies, according to the federal agency. However, Denver may not need to panic about water restrictions just yet.

“Right now, Denver Water’s water supply is in good shape,”wrote Travis Thompson, spokesperson for Denver Water, in an email.

“Systemwide, our reservoirs are at higher-than-normal levels for this time of year at 88 percent. Typically, they are around 85 percent right now. But, we are definitely keeping a close eye on the current conditions and hoping for some much needed moisture to help begin building that snowpack for 2017.”

Forecasting models had shown a change in the weather next week to both lower temperatures and bring some snow to the Front Range, but that is looking less likely.

That incoming weather may still drop some amount of snow on the mountains, but it’s still too early to tell much, according to Noah Brauer, a meteorologist who contributes to Weather5280.

Andrew Kenney

Author: Andrew Kenney

Andrew Kenney writes about public spaces, Denver phenomena and whatever else. He previously worked for six years as a reporter at The News & Observer in Raleigh, N.C. His most prized possession is his collection of bizarre voicemail. Leave him one at 303-502-2803, or email akenney@denverite.com.