How’s the weather in Denver? Well, we’re in the middle of a heatwave and a severe drought right now.
It’s not just Denver, but a good part of the metro area. The National Drought Mitigation Center says the heatwave, as well as a drought, are affecting Arapahoe, Adams, Broomfield, Boulder, Weld, and Jefferson counties. Even the ones that aren’t officially in a drought are still considered unusually dry, showing how this issue is affecting the whole state.
High Temperatures Worsen the Already Dry Conditions
The current conditions beat out the previous goal for the longest time Denver has gone without measurable snow — the last goal was set November 21, 1934.
Early December is already dry, and the higher temperatures are only making it worse. Because of the extreme heat, a lot of moisture from the ground is evaporating. This makes the area more vulnerable to wildfires.
That being said, this isn’t the worst drought Colorado has experienced. To date, the worst ones were in 2020 and in 2002. This makes some hopeful, but others are concerned that this situation will only get worse as time goes on.
Snow Is the Solution
The main reason everyone is praying for snow is because snow would solve both the drought and the high temperatures. If there’s snow buildup, it will eventually melt, putting moisture back in the soil. The water would flow back into the Colorado river, which is especially important considering how dry it has been lately.
Along with that, the snow will also decrease the temperatures slightly. Snow is highly reflective, far more than normal soil. It reflects sunlight back into the atmosphere, making the air warmer. While the snow will melt eventually, some snow might be enough to give us some relief.
Right now, many are concerned about this drought and how long it will last. Some are also wondering if this will be a pattern for future Colorado winters, rather than just being a one-off incident. Only time will tell. For now, we all just need to pray for snow.