The 1987-88 water year concluded on a very dry note in northern Utah.

The year, which ended Sept. 30, will go down in the record books as one of the driest, if not the driest, in many areas of northern Utah.The Wasatch Front and the northern mountains were the main problem areas for lack of moisture. In contrast, central and southern Utah received relatively moderate amounts of precipitation through the winter and into the summer, according to the report issued this week by William J. Alder, meteorologist in charge of the Salt Lake office of the National Weather Service, and Gerald Williams, director of the Colorado Basin River Forecast Center.

Because of persistent hot, dry conditions during the summer, northern Utah residents may have a hard time believing that the overall state average for the water year was 101 percent of normal.

The breakdown among the state's seven climatological divisions was: western, 115 percent; Dixie, 135; north-central, 72; south-central, 116; northern mountains, 68; Uintah Basin, 102; and southeast, 118.

Some of the wettest and driest water years in Utah's history have come during the 1980s in many northern Utah locations. The driest years were 55 to 60 percent of normal, while the wet years were about 90 to 95 percent above normal.

The bottom line, Alder said, is that a wet year shows a greater departure from normal than a dry year.

(CHART) A dry year over most of northern Utah

The following tabulations from some of the approximately 200 Utah climatological stations show their ranking compared to the driest on record:

Station '87-'88 WaterYr.Percent Normal Driest RankingYrs. of record Brigham City 11.18 in. 56 19.44 in. 1st 52 Brighton 26.30 62 42.21 2nd 76 City Creek 17.58 59 29.87 4th 74 Coalville 10.08 67 15.04 7th 81 Corrine 8.87 56 15.86 1st 47 Deer Creek 15.39 74 20.81 6th 51 Echo Dam 7.61 55 13.80 2nd 51 Farmington 13.91 68 20.32 6th 90 Flaming Gorge 10.19 79 12.84 9th 32 Heber 7.61 50 15.32 1st 90 Holladay 14.62 62 23.57 2nd 19 Huntsville 13.34 58 22.94 2nd 23 Kamas 10.05 57 17.66 1st 41

Logan, USU 11.80 68 17.36 8th 90 Manila 5.59 58 9.71 4th 37 Mountain Dell 15.33 67 22.70 9th 76 Morgan 10.93 60 18.07 7th 87 Richmond 11.87 67 17.75 4th 78 Salt Lake City 9.94 65 15.31 5th 114 Snake Creek 13.27 60 22.17 2nd 80 Wanship 10.60 63 16.94 3rd 35 Woodruff 6.03 69 8.74 6th 80 (CHART) Where rainfall was above normal

Station '87-'88 Water Yr. Percent 30 Yr. Normal Blanding 15.20 in. 130 ll.70 in. Castle Dale 9.91 135 7.32 Emery 15.92 168 9.49 Ferron 10.86 143 8.16 Green River 9.77 162 6.04 Loa 12.50 176 7.09 Orderville 20.87 143 14.55 Modena 16.46 178 9.24 Zion N.P. 18.73 128 14.58