There is abundant snow in the mountains of Oregon. Most of the state’s mountains are currently covered with 1.5-2 times the amount of snowpack typically recorded in these regions, as measured by “snow water equivalent” data from the National Weather Service, which records the depth of water that would cover the ground if the snowpack were in a liquid state.
The high snowfall is excellent news for the region’s fish populations, according to Andy Bryant, a hydrologist with the National Weather Service.
“The spring snowpack is a big benefit for summer water supply for almost every part of the state,” Bryant said. “It also helps sustain streamflow in streams, which makes for happy fish and other riverine creatures.”
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Nonetheless, there is a danger of flooding in Eastern Oregon this spring due to the high snow levels. “There is a limited risk in Eastern Oregon, including the area around Burns and a few rivers draining the Wallowa Range and northern portions of the Blue Mountains,” he said.
Bryant has said it is too soon to tell whether the snowpack will help with the summer wildfire conditions.
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