The last water year was extremely dry in Sacramento with a record 212-day dry streak lasting from March to October. The mark was set very low and the city has already surpassed its entire 2021 water year in terms of precipitation.
With the historic category 5 atmospheric river that drenched the area in late-October, along with the current storm bringing torrential rain, the city has received more than 8 inches of rain in the 2022 water year. The entire 2021 water year (beginning in October and lasting through the following September) only saw 7.87 inches of rain in Sacramento. It’s an astonishing turnaround and a ray of hope to bring the region out of a drought.
As of writing this, the rain is falling hard on the region. But it was the late-October storm that really put a dent in the water year. On October 24, Sacramento received 5.44 inches of rain, breaking a 141-year-old record of single day precipitation in the city.
Since 1850, the average annual rainfall in a water year is around 18 inches. This number can vary significantly depending on the year. Sacramento received approximately 37 inches of rain in 1983 and 34 inches in 2017. Conversely, the city received 10.5 inches in 2014 and the now historic 7.8 inches last year.
The torrential rain has been a welcomed sight throughout NorCal. The ongoing drought has left the region recovering from devastating wildfires and suffering from low water levels and snowpack. While it would take an immense amount of precipitation to relieve the region from the stresses of drought, this is certainly a welcomed start.
Want even better news? The region is trending towards a 10-day storm for the ages to end the year:
Let’s keep this water flowing!