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New water year off to great start so far

The water year is off to a strong start, but it will take a lot to erase the drought that covers the entire state. (

SALT LAKE CITY — Weather watchers say the new water year that started Oct. 1 is already off to an above average start, with the area two inches of precipitation ahead of where we would normally be.

KSL Meteorologist Dan Guthrie tells Utah’s Morning News it’s encouraging.

“It’s been pretty good. Just here in Salt Lake City, we’ve picked up two and a half inches of water, so we’ve started off this water year, which starts in October, on a good note,” Guthrie says.

The next few days look warmer and drier than the last week has been.

“We are going to kind of quiet our pattern down, so to speak,” Guthrie says. “We’ve got sunshine the next seven days.”

However, while the precipitation will dry up, the temperatures are about to go on a roller-coaster ride.

“We’ll have a front that’s going to come through, the middle portion of the weekend. It’s not going to bring storms – again, we’re going to stay dry. But it is going to bring a cooler air mass in from Canada,” Guthrie says. “We’ll see temperatures in the 60s for Friday and Saturday, drop to the 40s for Sunday, and then we’ll slowly roll our way back up into the 60s by mid-week next week.”

drought map water year

The U.S. Drought Monitor for Utah shows how much more ground we have to make up in spite of a good start to the water year. (

The water year that ended Sept. 30 is another story. A dry September capped the end of a very dry summer, leaving many area residents concerned about rainfall and snowpack and whether there would be enough of both to fill area reservoirs. Two inches ahead for this year is good news, but the entire state is still considered in drought, with the Four Corners area considered to be in “exceptional” drought.