In January, Oregon, always a rainy place, is supposed to be smack in the middle of its high rain season. Not this year. Take a look at Applegate Lake which should be full at this time of year.
And now the State has imposed a Red Flag forest fire warning - in January.
The drought is worse in California. The San Francisco Chronicle warns that the State's Coho salmon are facing extinction.
Further south, in San Louis Obispo, they haven't had much in the way of rain for almost a year.
No relief is in sight.
Long-range forecasting by the National Weather Service calls for drier than normal conditions through spring. And time is running out – typically about half of the state’s precipitation occurs in December, January and February. Even cool weather and fog would help. But temperatures in San Luis Obispo have been breaking records by reaching into the low 90s in recent weeks.
“We essentially haven’t had any rain since last spring,” said San Luis Obispo Cal Fire Chief Rob Lewin. “It’s just very strange and difficult for us. We desperately need a wetting rain.”
To top it off, the San Jose Mercury News has a dismal piece on how California has endured past droughts lasting up to 200-years in duration.
Through studies of tree rings, sediment and other natural evidence, researchers have documented multiple droughts in California that lasted 10 or 20 years in a row during the past 1,000 years -- compared to the mere three-year duration of the current dry spell. The two most severe megadroughts make the Dust Bowl of the 1930s look tame: a 240-year-long drought that started in 850 and, 50 years after the conclusion of that one, another that stretched at least 180 years.
In the Bay Area of San Francisco, the current rainfall pattern is set to be the lowest since 1580.
Coastal British Columbia is experiencing the tail end of the American Pacific drought. It's been unseasonably warm and unseasonably dry. People are getting nervous about the state of snowpack on the local mountains. Even the ski resorts are hurting.