January Storms Bring Precipitation but Snowpack Remains Below Average by Department of Water Resources Jan 30, 2020 Water News SACRAMENTO – The Department of Water Resources (DWR) today conducted the second manual snow survey of 2020 at Phillips Station. The manual survey recorded 40.5 inches of snow depth and a snow water equivalent (SWE) of 14.5 inches, which is 79% of average for this location. The SWE measures the amount of water contained in the snowpack, which provides a more accurate forecast of spring runoff. “After a good start in December, January saw dry conditions that added little to the Sierra snowpack,” said DWR Director Karla Nemeth. “As climate change continues to impact California’s snowpack, we look to actions described in the recently released California Water Resilience Portfolio to meet the challenges brought by weather variability to California’s water supply.” In addition to the manual surveys, DWR collects readings from 130 electronic snow sensors scattered throughout the state. Measurements indicate that statewide, the snowpack’s water equivalent is 12 inches, or 72% of the Jan. 30 average.