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Happy New Year 2021 . . . Water New Year that is!
Wait! It’s not January 1st, is it? No, it’s October 1st and a special day on the CoCoRaHS calendar. It is the first day of the 2021 Water Year!
What is the "water year" you ask?
The water year is the best consecutive twelve months that span the "water storage/water usage" hydrologic cycle. The water year cycle is particularly obvious in the Rocky Mountains and western U.S. where snow begins to accumulate at high elevations in October and doesn't melt and run off until next spring and summer. But this same important annual cycle takes different forms across the entire country.
Another way to think of the Water Year is the resting/replenishing season followed by the water consuming season where vegetation grows, crops are cultivated and then harvested. For much of the country, the months of October through March are months where precipitation from the sky exceeds evaporation from the ground. This means that soil moisture and ground water can recharge. When next spring arrives, temperatures will warm again, plants will come back from dormancy and once again evapotranspiration will surge.
CoCoRaHS Water Year Summaries
As we celebrate the new year, we will generate Water Year Summary reports for every CoCoRaHS station. A first draft of these summaries will be provided in early October to give all observers the chance to review their observations for the year and make any corrections if necessary. (We'll send out A message when they are ready.) Then in a few weeks once everyone has had a chance to review their observations and fill in missing data, we will then regenerate the reports.
To look at previous year’s Water Year Summary Reports please click here: PAST WATER YEAR SUMMARY REPORTS .
Thanks again for helping CoCoRaHS track precipitation across the country. Happy New Year!