dry dirt cinoby (iStock)

Photo Credit: cinoby (iStock).

Conditions are dry in Colorado, with just over half of the state experiencing 'extreme' or 'exceptional' drought, according to the United States Drought Monitor.

Statewide, 98.6 percent of the state is experiencing some level of drought, with the entire state being moderately dry.

This level of drought is dangerous for a number of reasons. Not only does it allow large wildfires to rapidly grow, the dryness will likely kill many fish in evaporating water sources and can be very damaging to livestock pastures and crops. Conditions this dry also limit outdoor recreation, resulting in fire bans and a shorter ski season.

Maps of the drought show that just over 50 percent of the state is in extreme drought or worse, with a large portion of the western part of the state making up the driest terrain. The exception to this are the 'extreme' and 'exceptional' drought conditions that span a few counties in eastern Colorado.

The negative impacts of this widespread drought have already been seen around the state in the forms of rapidly growing wildfires, dying fish, and water restrictions in major population centers.

If you're living in Colorado during this time of drought, consider limiting your water use and always be aware of rules and restrictions around burning. Do your part to help prevent catastrophe.

Editor's Note: The United States Drought Monitor measures drought on a scale of "none" to D4. A D0 rating is considered abnormally dry. D1 means drought is "moderate." D2 means drought is "severe." D3 means drought is "extreme." D4 means drought is "exceptional." See additional details here.

Director of Content and Operations

Spencer McKee manages the OutThere Colorado digital publication as the Director of Content and Operations. In his spare time, Spencer loves to rock climb, trail run, and mountain bike. Follow along with his adventures on Instagram at @spence.outside


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