Monday, May 26, 2014

Rain, Precious Rain

My apologies. I thought I posted this Saturday (I'm writing this on Monday), so please read this as if it had already been up for 2 full days.

It's been pretty dry here, as I've stated in many entries prior to this. Since early December, a period of about 6 months, we had received only .85 inch of rain. We are in Level 2 of our water contingency plan, which means we can water outside only once every 2 weeks. We are nearing Level 3, which will tighten restrictions even more and even affect businesses, such as car washes. With Level 3, there is no outside watering allowed, among other things. Most people have already turned off the sprinkler systems completely, and yards are pretty brown. We understand that we would rather have water for cooking and bathing rather than for green lawns. Our daily water usage totals have been coming down steadily the past few months. The city council is constantly looking at other options, from recycling waste water to damming the local Red Arroyo which would collect some additional water for local use.

But yesterday the skies opened and rain fell. It is the best rain we've had in months. The rain began falling about 5:00 PM and was still coming down when I went to bed last night. This morning I found a beautiful 3 inches of rain in my gauge. What a blessing!

A rain like this does not break a drought. It probably will have little affect on our reservoirs, for the ground was so dry that much of the rain was soaked up immediately. We would need rain like this off and on over the next several weeks to really end the drought. But a rain like this will revive yards and help grass on ranch lands. Depending on the stage various crops are currently in, it may help them quite a bit as well; likewise, such heavy rain at the wrong time could wash away seed. And for those folks who have water collection systems, they undoubtedly filled up yesterday.

Other areas of the Concho Valley may not have received as much rain as my location did, but I think all areas received some rain.

I'll wait a few days and allow time for water to work its way down our streams and rivers to our reservoirs to see how much additional water they have collected. I'll post that information in about a week. In the meantime, we have a good chance for more rain over the next 3 or 4 days.

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