Just as California's liberal elites had convinced everyone that climate change had permanently altered global weather patterns such that the entire state was doomed to be stuck in a perpetual drought which would inevitably render it about as inhabitable as the surface of Mars within years, an unrelenting series of storms has struck and in a matter of days filled lakes, overflowed rivers and buried mountains in snow. And just like that, 40% of California was lifted from a drought that had plagued the state for a decade.
Of course, that much rain, in such a short period of time, can have devastating consequences as this video from Big Sur illustrates.
— Evan Sernoffsky (@EvanSernoffsky)
As does this dashcam video of a flash flood in norther California.
In all, the rainfall totals from around Northern California over the past 14 days are staggering with certain areas receiving nearly 2 feet of rain according to
Downtown San Francisco has received 5.53 inches of rain since Jan. 1. The last time the city has seen a number higher than this was 1982 when 7.53 inches fell between Jan. 1 and Jan. 11. During last year's El Niño year, S.F. had received close to three inches by this date.
More impressive numbers: The coastal range mountains outside Guerneville, where roads and homes went underwater when the Russian River flooded, has received some 21 inches of rain since Jan. 4.
In Downieville, where the Yuba River gushed with a heavy flow all week, some 23 inches of rain were recorded in the past seven days.
And as bad as the flooding has been in parts of Northern California, it would have undoubtedly been even worse but for the the ability to divert some of the excess water into previously depleted reservoirs scattered throughout the state.
The super soakings have filled reservoirs that were mere mud puddles, their cracked lake beds once exposed at the height of the drought that plagued the state for five-plus years and still persists in many regions, especially in Southern California.
The reservoirs in Northern California have gained some million acres of storage in the past seven days, Michael Anderson, a climatologist with the California Department of Water Resources estimates. And total surface storage for the state is roughly 97 percent of average, with the the total storage for the largest reservoirs being at 111 percent of normal.
Lake Oroville, the state's second-largest reservoir, gained a bit more than 620,000 acre-feet in the first 10 days of January alone.
"That is almost 18 percent of its capacity," Anderson said. "Since Oroville was about 750,000 acre-feet below its storage limits during flood season (a consequence of the drought), they can keep all that water for future use and largely offset storage impacts from the drought."
Meanwhile, the transformation of the state's reservoirs, in just a matter of weeks, is astonishing.
What a difference a year makes with most reservoirs now near capacity....
...versus ~30% of capacity last year.
But we're sure this abundance of rain is ever bit as much due to global warming as the lack of rain was last year...but we're still waiting for official confirmation on that from our respected political leaders in Sacramento.