DENVER (KDVR) — It’s been a warm and dry start to April across Colorado. This has resulted in worsening drought levels in Eastern Colorado, and some flood concerns in the northwest part of the state.
On April 6, the drought monitor showed areas like Pueblo in severe drought, which translates to about a 3 on a scale from 0 to 6. Meanwhile, areas like Denver and the western half of Colorado were drought-free.
April 13, 2023’s drought monitor showed drought conditions worsening in the southeast from severe to exceptional drought. Even the Denver Metro has felt the impact of the dry weather and is now in the abnormally dry category.
One thing that has been helping areas in the western half of the state is high snowpack.
Snowpack across Colorado is at 135 percent of normal. While this is good news for drought, high snow pack and a stretch of warm temperatures is leading to rapid snow melt in some areas.
Yampa, for example is at 146% of normal snowpack, but temperatures well above freezing resulted in some flooding along US-40 in areas like Hayden.
Flood concerns for this area continue into the start of the weekend, and areal flood warnings are in effect until noon on Saturday. This means that flooding of rivers, creeks, streams, and other low-lying and flood-prone locations is imminent or actively occurring. Low-water crossings may be inundated with water and potentially impassable during this time.