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Colorado Snowpack 'Just Okay' According To State Climatologists

SUMMIT COUNTY, Colo. (CBS4)- It's been about a month since CBS4's Mountain Newsroom Reporter Spencer Wilson checked in with state climatologists about the snowpack in Colorado, and where we needed to be.

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On Monday, Wilson checked back in to see if the "make-or-break period" had enough moisture to make a significant difference.

"(The) snowpack is fairly decent," Assistant State Climatologist Becky Bolinger said. "I wish it were a little bit better. I would feel more comfortable if we were, you know, above average at this point. But we've been keeping along with average a little bit, lagging behind occasionally, but then getting up there."

You can check the models from the Colorado Climate Center here

Bolinger said the focus now becomes making sure there's an even temperature for the snowpack to melt, if it melts too quickly, we could lose some of that hard-earned moisture. More late-season snowstorms would be good too... but not if it's too stormy.

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"Any time we're getting snow that's great," Bolinger said. "Sometimes the wind works a little bit against that though because when you have a lot of wind, that means you are increasing that evaporative loss. It also could mean in areas where there is no snowpack west of us, we're carrying dust in and depositing dust onto that snow, which is also not as beneficial."

While Colorado basins should hit average, or right below this season according to outlook models, the drought picture for Colorado interacting with other states and their water systems continues to look problematic.

"So on a bigger picture, it's still going to look like a huge concern. And it is. But within our state, I am optimistic that we will have some recovery," Bolinger said.

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Bolinger added with tempered snowmelt, the state would be able to retain some snow in the high country for longer, providing better protection against wildfire potential.

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