For the first time in nearly a year, the Great Salt Lake is creeping upward.

Hydrologists with the U.S. Geological Survey measured Utah's most famous body of water at 4206.5 feet above sea level Tuesday, a rise of just above half an inch over the level recorded since Dec. 1, 1988.The reason for this week's modest rise is undoubtedly that Utah's drought of 1988 is moderating. "I guess with the pumps turned off now we're probably getting a little inflow," said William J. Alder, meteorologist in charge of the U.S. Weather Service's Salt Lake headquarters. "I'm not surprised."

At the Salt Lake airport, the water year is still only 66 percent of normal.

"I don't think the drought is over," Alder said. "We've made a minor dent in it, but I don't think it's over by any means."