The state’s Agricultural Impact Task Force is looking at the economic effects of these dry conditions. Photo courtesy U.S. Drought Monitor. > Video above: Time-lapse of the Middle Fork fire. Colorado coronavirus latest numbers, Oct. 26, Crews quickly try to contain growing Silverado Fire, Broncos lose Mike Purcell for season with foot injury, Fangio: 'We need to fix our entire passing game', Entomologists remove first Asian giant hornet nest found in Washington state, These hay fields may know something we don’t: how to save the Colorado River, Extreme drought in Denver for first time since 2013. A comment from a rancher in Mancos reads, “I’ve been in the business for a decade and, in my 10 short years, have gotten whiplash from how extreme all of our weather events have become.”. We’re now in a La Niña pattern, which usually means drier conditions for the state. Much of the state is suffering from drought conditions which will not improve until we get rain or snow. The wildfire burned more than 80 acres (32 hectares) in just a few hours, prompting evacuations. “We haven’t had rain,” Matt said. The drought is happening just a year after most of Colorado was declared drought-free. Interactive radar, custom alerts, and Colorado's Most Accurate Forecast. "If we get a decent winter, and it doesn't have to be, 'Oh my God, the most amazing winter ever,' but a decent winter with a decent amount of snowfall, we'll get rid of the drought," Renwick said. It’s windy and the smoke billows into the sky from a ridge of trees. The Beltons are thankful to have options to move their cattle to different water sources, but some ranchers have to truck in water. We're not doing that this year, obviously because of COVID, but we still want to be sure that folks are able to tell their story,” Greenberg said. “It’s the lowest and driest I’ve ever seen it,” Matt said. But in areas of extreme drought like southern Colorado, the changes could happen up to a week early. Tom Renwick, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service, said the state could return to pre-2020 figures as long as the winter provides some precipitation. Total snow accumulation over the fires ranged from 1-2 feet. The good news is that overnight lows will stay in the refreshing 40s each night. Temperatures will swing between the 60s to 70s to 80s, with the warmest days being on Monday and Tuesday. This story is powered by COLab, the Colorado News Collaborative. Our safety is first.”. DENVER (KDVR) -- Bands of snow will continue to move across Denver and the Front Range through the evening, overnight into midday Monday before ending. Denver's Leading Local News: Weather, Traffic, Sports and more | Denver, Colorado | 9NEWS.com Environment Record drought puts Colorado farmers and … The bands will vary from light to moderate snow at times. This is now the driest April through September on record for Colorado's Western Slope. "It looks really bad, but you know, I wouldn't freak out just yet. “At the place that we just bought, we put a bunch of cows on it in the spring when we were done calving before we could go to the forest allotment, and it didn’t come back at all.”. The Cameron Peak fire has torched more than 200 square miles (518 square kilometers) and is 42% contained. Denver is in a drought for the first time in a year, and if we don't get needed moisture in the next few months, it could lead to an enhanced fire season, among other possible impacts. “If a fire were to break out, we’d go lay fence down so cattle don’t butt up to a fence if they’re trying to get out. We are essentially in our third year of drought, which feels more permanent and requires a different mindset and management of our beautiful resources,” the comment continues. "That's exactly why we're still seeing a high fire danger and still seeing active fires in places," said Brian Fuchs, a climatologist with the U.S. Drought Monitor. DENVER (AP) — The summer drought that lingered throughout Colorado has become worse. That just hasn't happened yet.". 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But he’s optimistic for what will come next. With poor pasture grass and less hay, many ranchers are having to buy it to feed their cattle, which means hay prices are up.Todd Hagenbuch, an agriculture agent and director with Colorado State University Extension in Routt County, called it a double-whammy. "Typically this time of year we're cooling off and starting to get wetter. As the forecast remains dry, drought continues to climb. 9NEWS joined this historic collaboration with more than 40 other newsrooms across Colorado to better serve the public. “I think we need to change the semantics and management around drought. DENVER (KDVR) — We enter October with a forecast that keeps Colorado and metro Denver dry for days to come. DENVER (CBS4) – Flocking to the high country to view the spectacular fall foliage is an annual tradition for many families in Colorado. “We'd be putting legislators on a bus and go into the drought-iest places in the state to see what life is like on the ground. DENVER (KDVR) -- Snow tapers-off in Denver and across the Front Range this morning. DENVER (AP) — The summer drought that lingered throughout Colorado has become worse. “There’s not much hay for sale at all here,” Matt said, and added that he never sells his extra hay, although he gets calls all the time for it. “It doesn't come back like it used to, you know, the grass and stuff,” he said. There are several active fires in the state, the largest of which is in Larimer County in the north. “If we get a dry winter, then next summer we’re going to have a different conversation because those creeks will suffer greatly,” Hagenbuch said. “When you have a monsoon season that doesn't turn out well, and it's 2 degrees hotter than anything that had been experienced previously, it really makes those conditions that much more impactful,” he said. The good news, West said, is the fires don’t impact the time-frame or leaf coloring too much. Their hay production was also down by a third. Conditions have deteriorated over the past year due to drier conditions, warmer temperatures and a higher level of evaporation. But he’s worried about what might happen in the future. Image credit: The National Drought Mitigation Center. We stay below freezing and fall to the teens for the afternoon and evening. In a year of relentless heat and record drought — and destructive wildfires — Colorado’s farmers and ranchers find themselves trying to adapt to life on the front lines of climate change. It is the fourth time in two decades — following 2002, 2006 and 2012 — that the entire state has been classified as abnormally dry or in drought.
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