Idaho Snowpack Looking Good, But Reservoirs Remain A Question
The snowpack across Idaho is at or above normal for this time of year, which is welcomed news after the lengthy irrigation season the state saw in 2022, tapping many reservoirs to extremely low levels. In fact, Erin Whorton with NRCS-Idaho said the only locations that are not above 100% of average are in extreme north Idaho. The solid snowpack as we prepare to wrap up February is encouraging as producers start to think about the upcoming irrigation season.
“So, it is good news that we have an above normal snowpack and that's going to definitely make for an easier irrigation season. But it comes down to the areas but how low their reservoir storage got. So some areas like the Boise basin where they're at above normal reservoir storage and we have a normal snowpack. Things are looking really good for water supply in the Boise basin. Things are looking good in the Owyhee Basin even though the reservoir storage is really low the snowpack is high enough that we're expecting to be able to meet irrigation demand.”
While there’s reason for encouragement, Whorton noted locations such as the Salmon Falls and Oakley Reservoirs, as well as the Upper Snake have really strong snowpacks, but reservoirs that were so depleted, she would like to see more snow before the season is up to help irrigators get through the upcoming growing season. But, the big question, is with just a few more weeks before we typically hit the peak of the snow season, will we see any more of the white stuff?
“Looks like we're going to get more snow and all the places we need it, over the next week or two if those forecasts come true, we're continuing to look good," Whorton noted. "And things are looking good for water supply in a majority of the state."
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