- The ridge pattern that brought drier and warmer conditions from December through most of February to the western US has shifted west and south allowing for a return of winter. Welcomed rain and snow has helped lower drought conditions but not enough to make up the dry winter so far. Cooler conditions have also slowed spring growth.
- Short term forecasts call for more late winter, early spring rains and snowpack additions at least through the third week of the month. Temperatures are expected to stay cooler than average over the majority of the western US for the rest of the month.
- The spring seasonal forecast (March through May) continues to be dominated by the pattern expected by the La Niña in the tropics and cold PDO conditions in the North Pacific. From these conditions, the forecast continues to tilt the odds to spring being cool/wet in the PNW and average to warmer than average and dry in California. While March will likely help the water year accumulation, the odds of making up the current precipitation deficits decline rapidly this time of year and large areas of the west are likely to see drought conditions develop or get worse in the coming months.