May Day was kind to the Sanpete Valley. Its heavy clouds dropped 4 inches of wet and clinging snow on thirsty fields.
And April was equally generous with above-average precipitation.In Manti, weather observer Lee J. Anderson measured 1.70 inches of water for the month. Normal is 1.29 inches.
And Gary Jorgensen, who makes the measurements for the Forest Service at Sorensen Field, a mile southwest of Ephraim, recorded 1.45 inches, compared with the 1.03 inch average. That brought the Ephraim precipitation to 7.71 inches for the water year; 6.87 inches is average.
The big storms in the Sanpete Valley occurred on April 17 and 21 at both the Ephraim and Manti stations.
Despite the valley precipitation, however, the water deficiency in the mountain watersheds continues unabated, according to snow surveys completed May 2 by the Soil Conservation Service. And it's the water content of the snowpack that is most significant for the summer irrigators, LaMar Jorgensen of the SCS said.
Here is how the watersheds in four central Utah counties stack up:
Emery - There are 45 inches of snow, containing 15.5 inches of water, at the Seely Creek Ranger Station. That's 81 percent of normal.
Juab - Rees's Flat, east of Levan, has 8 inches of snow, with 2.7 inches of water, 25 percent.
Sanpete - The SCS survey crew took measurement on three watersheds. In Ephraim Canyon there are 33 inches of snow, containing 11.9 inches of water, 68 percent, at the Headquarters course and 58 inches of snow, containing 20.0 inches of water, 74 percent, at the Meadows course.
The Beaver Dam Course low in Twelve Mile Canyon, east of Mayfield, has no snow cover. High in the drainage at the Mount Baldy Ranger station are 58 inches of snow, with 15.5 inches of water, 81 percent.
The Mammoth Ranger Station in Fairview Canyon has 32 inches of snow, with 13.2 inches of water, 63 percent, and the Huntington-Horseshoe course on the same drainage has 55 inches of snow, with 20.8 inches of water, 76 percent.
Sevier - Data were gathered at three sites in the Salina Canyon watershed: At Farnsworth Lake, 57 inches of snow, with 21.1 inches of water, 92 percent; at the Gooseberry Ranger Station, 17 inches of snow, with 6.3 inches of water, 63 percent, and at Pickle Keg Springs, 29 inches of snow, with 11.9 inches of water, 75 percent.