Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Western Washington Feeling #WAdrought

By Chase Gallagher, Southwest Region Communications Manager

On the Olympic Peninsula, farms, fish and families are entering the third month of #WAdrought. One of the first portions of the state where drought was declared, the Peninsula is already showing some dramatic effects.

This week KUOW’s Ashley Ahearn reported on the snowpack, irrigation, and fisheries issues on the Dungeness River in Sequim (audio on link).
Last week KING 5’s Alison Morrow joined us in Sequim in advance of a community drought forum and showed the stark visual scene at Hurricane Ridge as well:

Small streams facing big hurdles

Late last week we were sent a picture taken by the natural resource department of the Jamestown S’Klallam Tribe:

Siebert Creek, Clallam County. Photo courtesy Jamestown S'Klallam Tribe.
The water in the foreground is Siebert Creek, and in the background the Strait of Juan De Fuca. Those rocks in between are the issue – low flows in surface streams spell trouble for salmon smolt and other fish passage. 

As streamflows fluctuate in #WAdrought, we could see more trouble spots like Siebert creek around the Peninsula and throughout western Washington.


You can stay up to date on the statewide drought on our main drought portal, or any of our regional update pages. We’re working hard on ensuring that our state is ready as the summer months dry out and heat up during this snowpack drought. This year stands to be a challenge for the entire state, and we’ll get through #WAdrought working together.  

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