Sierra snow half of normal

Dry start to 2013 has resulted in unusually low snowfall in Sierras

Though surveyors recently found the snowpack in the Sierra Nevada to be only half of what is expected for late March, outlook for summer water allocation could be much worse.

The first three months of 2013 have been the driest in California’s recorded history. But November and December of last year were unusually wet in the northern Sierra, and water storage in the state’s two largest reservoirs—Lake Oroville and Shasta Lake—remain at above-average levels, according to the Los Angeles Times.

However, the state has reduced projected water deliveries to Southern California, and farmers on the west side of the San Joaquin Valley may get only a fifth of the federal irrigation they have contracted.