Drought conditions worsen across NW Oklahoma

ENID, Okla. — Drought conditions continued to worsen throughout Oklahoma.

Much of the western part of Garfield County now is listed in extreme drought, according to U.S. Drought Monitor in the latest report released Thursday. That is the second-worse drought category.

The rest of the county is in severe drought, the third-worst category.

Grant County is in much the same shape as Garfield County, with much of the western half in extreme drought and the rest in severe drought, according U.S. Drought Monitor.

In Kingfisher County, only small parts of the northwest and southwest corners are in extreme drought. The rest of the county is in severe drought.

The rest of Northwest Oklahoma is in extreme drought.

The past three months have been dry for the area, with much of Northwest Oklahoma receiving little or no rain since October.

The Mesonet weather-recording station at Breckinridge has recorded just .47 of an inch of precipitation since Oct. 21 — none so far in February; only .20 in January (all on Jan. 26); .12 in December; and .15 in November.

October 2017 was a wet month, with 3.67 inches of rain reported at the Breckinridge Mesonet site, but none of that came after Oct. 21, when .71 of an inch was recorded.

Farther west, the situation is worse.

The Woodward Mesonet site has recorded no precipitation since Oct. 10, when .10 of an inch was measured.

So far this year, according to Oklahoma Climatological Survey, north central Oklahoma — which includes Garfield County — has received an average of .08 of an inch of precipitation, just 7 percent of normal. That translates to a departure of 1.12 inches of precipitation normally.

In the last 120 days — from Oct. 11 to Feb. 7 — the north central region has received an average of 1.11 inches of precipitation, or 18 percent of normal, according to OCS. That's 5.01 inches less than normal, making it the second-driest Oct. 11-Feb. 7 period on record since 1955-56, when the average precipitation across the region was .83 of an inch. Records go back to 1921, according to OCS.

Hassler is associate editor for the Enid News & Eagle, a CNHI News Service publication. He can be reached at enidnews@enidnews.com.

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Kevin Hassler is associate editor of the Enid News & Eagle. He can be reached at enidnews@enidnews.com.


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