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Dry winter reduces Sierra Nevada snowpack

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POSTED January 30, 2012 7:55 p.m.

SACRAMENTO  (AP) — State water officials say recent storms have not made up for this year's dry winter, leaving California's snowpack at below average levels.

The Sierra Nevada snowpack is a key source of California's water supply. Officials said Monday that snowpack water content was just 38 percent of average, compared to the 19 percent they measured in early January.

Department of Water Resources Director Mark Cowin says he is still hoping a normal weather pattern will boost reservoir levels in the coming months.

Water managers estimate they will deliver 60 percent of the amount requested by contractors this year, largely because reservoir levels remain high after last year's heavy rain and snow.

The department is set to conduct its second snow survey of the season on Wednesday in the 400-mile-long mountain range.

 

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