Publication Date January 26, 2016

Snowpack in drought-stricken California hits five-year high

United States

Recent El Nino storms have boosted the Sierra Nevada snowpack to 115 percent of normal — more than the drought-stricken state has seen in five years, officials said Tuesday. The electronic reading by the state Department of Water Resources was the highest since it reached 129 percent in 2011. The Sierra snowpack contributes nearly one-third of California's water when it melts in the spring. However, officials say the snowpack would have to be at 150 percent of normal by April 1 to ease the four-year drought.