Drought Information Statement
Issued by NWS Rapid City, SD

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AXUS73 KUNR 091611

Drought Information Statement
National Weather Service Rapid City SD
910 AM MDT Thu Feb 9 2017

...Drought Conditions Improve Slightly Across Western South Dakota
and Northeastern Wyoming...


Recent snowfall, with above average moisture so far this winter, has
improved drought conditions slightly. However, drought conditions
this spring will depend largely on how the snow melts, when the
ground thaws, and how much additional precipitation is received over
the next few months.

At the beginning of February, Moderate (D1) drought conditions
covered Crook, Weston, and eastern Campbell counties in Wyoming. In
western South Dakota, Moderate (D1) drought conditions covered
Butte, Lawrence, Pennington, Custer, Fall River, Oglala Lakota,
northwestern Bennett, western Jackson, western Haakon, southwestern
Perkins, and most of Harding counties.

Abnormally dry (D0) conditions covered the rest of Campbell County
Wyoming, the rest of Bennett, Jackson, Haakon, Perkins, and Harding
Counties in South Dakota as well as Ziebach, and western potions of
Mellette and Todd Counties in South Dakota.


* Even though the ground is frozen at this time, soil moisture
  continues to be lacking.
* Hay production through the summer and fall was reduced, with some
  producers experiencing a lack of hay for the winter.
* Stock ponds and dugouts are still low, which continues to limit
  Water for cattle and other animals.


In January, temperatures were below average and precipitation was
near average. Average temperatures range from the upper teens in
northwestern South Dakota to the mid 20s in northeastern Wyoming.
average precipitation is around 1/3 of an inch on the plains with up
to an inch in the Black Hills.

Temperatures for 2016 were above average and precipitation was
mainly below average. Rainfall has varied by month, with May and
June being extremely dry, spotty areas of below and above average
rainfall in July, average to above average amounts in August, near-
average in September, below average precipitation in October and
November, and around average to slightly above average precipitation
in December.


Below normal sea surface temperature (SST) anomalies across the
equatorial Pacific Ocean have now trended to near normal, indicating
the weak La Nina is fading and ENSO-neutral conditions are
developing. These ENSO-neutral conditions are expected to continue
through the spring.

The temperature outlook for February through April indicates a
greater chance for below normal temperatures across northwestern
South Dakota with equal chances for below, above, and near average
temperatures for the rest of the area. The precipitation outlook
indicates there is a greater chance for above average precipitation
for the entire area.


Most creeks, streams, and rivers remain ice covered with the
exception of the faster flowing streams in the Black Hills.
According to the Bureau of Reclamation, reservoir levels are
slightly above average for this time of the year and remain ice
covered as usual.


The next drought statement will be issued in March unless conditions
change sooner.



The drought monitor is a multi-agency effort involving NOAA`s
National Weather Service and National Centers for Environmental
Information, United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), State
and Regional Climate Centers, and the National Drought Mitigation
Center at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Information for this
statement has been gathered from the NWS and Federal Aviation
Administration observing sites, State Cooperative Extension
Services, United States Department of Agriculture, Bureau of
Reclamation, and the United States Geological Survey.


If you have any questions or comments about this drought
information, please contact...

Melissa Smith
Service Hydrologist
National Weather Service
300 East Signal Drive
Rapid City South Dakota 57701


U.S. Drought page...

South Dakota Climate and Weather Information...

Wyoming Water and Climate Information...

U.S. Drought Monitor...

River and Reservoir Information
NWS - http://water.weather.gov/ahps
USGS - http://www.usgs.gov/water
USBR - http://www.usbr.gov/gp/lakes_reservoirs

Climate Prediction Center...

Black Hills Fire Restrictions...


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