Summary: February 4, 2020
January was dry for a lot of the Intermountain West, with the driest spots showing up over the Front Range Urban Corridor (Colorado Springs up to Cheyenne), southwest Utah, and isolated locations in northern Wyoming. The higher elevations in northern Colorado, northern UT, and western WY were slightly wetter than average. Most of the IMW was warmer than average for January.
February started with very warm temperatures and mild conditions and has quickly transitioned to a more active (i.e. cold and wet) pattern for much of the IMW. This colder and active pattern is expected to continue bringing more storms across the region throughout this week and on the 8-14 day timescale. In the short-term, storms look to favor the northern portions of the IMW, with more southern moisture possible out to 2 weeks.
Standardized precipitation index values (SPIs) are a mixed bag across the region and across time scales. For the Four Corners area, very dry SPIs still show up on the 6-month timescale. In the short-term 30-day timescale, dry SPIs dominated much of Colorado and Utah. However, snowpack throughout the IMW remains in good condition. Evaporative demand shows low values for the Upper Colorado River Basin (representing wind, humidity, and temperature conditions), but does show some high anomalies that could be stressing vegetation on the eastern plains of Colorado and New Mexico.