New Mexico’s Rio Grande forecast: 50-plus percent above average

Runoff this year on the Rio Grande at Otowi in northern New Mexico is forecast to be 50 percent above average, according to preliminary numbers out this morning from the Natural Resources Conservation Service.

There’s still a lot of uncertainty in the March-July forecast. There’s always a big spread in the forecast this early in the season because of uncertainty in the weather in the next few months. But we’ve had so much snow in the last six weeks that even the “worst case” right now (a one in ten chance) is above average:

  • average over the last 30 years: 720¬†thousand acre feet (kaf)
  • one-in-ten driest probability: 735 kaf
  • median: 1080 kaf
  • one-in-ten wettest probability: 1,490 kaf