National Weather Service United States Department of Commerce
Drought Information Statement
National Weather Service Grand Junction CO
120 PM MST Thu Mar 1 2018


Drought categories have increased over eastern Utah and 
western Colorado with extreme drought pushing northward and eastward.

Fall precipitation and winter snow accumulation so far are much 
below normal for the season for both eastern Utah and western
Colorado. The dry conditions have continued for the past four to 
five months. Precipitation in the southern valleys for February has 
been below normal. The mountains of southwestern Colorado received 
more precipitation than the valleys and actually near to slightly 
above normal for the month of February although long term 
precipitation remains well below normal.

Areas in D3...Extreme Drought...include all of 
Montezuma county and portions of La Plata, Dolores, San Miguel, 
Ouray, Montrose, Delta and Mesa counties of western Colorado. In 
eastern Utah portions of Grand and San Juan counties. The increase 
in drought severity is due to low soil moisture, lack of snow pack, 
low stream flows, wildland fire impacts, and agricultural impacts to 
both winter crops and grazing land.

Areas in D2...Severe Drought...include all or portions of San Juan, 
Grand, and Uintah Counties in Utah. In Colorado the counties include 
all or portions of La Plata, Dolores, San Miguel, San Juan, Ouray, 
Hinsdale, Montrose, Delta, Mesa, Garfield, Rio Blanco, Eagle, 
Pitkin, Gunnison and Archuleta. 

Winter season snow pack is much below normal for the higher 
elevations so far. Many SNOTEL sites are in the lowest 5 years for 
the period of record. February did bring moisture to the area but 
not enough to change drought impacts. Western Colorado combined 
basins snow water equivalent increased from 52 percent to 69 percent 
of normal this past month. Southeastern Utah snow water equivalent 
increased from 34 percent to 51 percent of normal. Valley 
precipitation has also been much below normal since the end of 
summer. So far for January, valley precipitation in Utah has been 
well below normal with Colorado locations slightly below to near 
normal for the water year.

 Latest Drought Monitor (Updated February 27th)

Courtesy of National Drought Mitigation Center

Feb 27 Drought Monitor