Tooele Transcript Bulletin – News in Tooele, Utah
image The sun sinks behind the Stansbury Mountains on Monday evening with Adobe Rock in the foreground. Tooele Valley currently is in a state of “severe drought” according to the U.S. Drought Monitor.

August 7, 2018
Barely a drop or two of rain fell during July

Drought is deepening across Tooele County 

Tooele City received more precipitation in July than it did in June — but not by much.

Ned Bevan, local weather observer for the National Weather Service, reported zero inches of precipitation for June and .34 inches of precipitation for July.

Measurable rain occurred only twice in Tooele City during July, with .32 inches on July 10 and .02 inches on July 17. Normal precipitation for the month is .92 inches.

Total precipitation for Tooele City for the water year that started on Oct. 1, 2017, is 10.07 inches. Total normal precipitation for the water year by the end of July is 16.13 inches.

A larger portion of Tooele County is now listed in “Severe Drought” condition than three weeks ago, according to the U.S. Drought Monitor. That portion includes the eastern third of Tooele County, along with Tooele and Rush valleys.

Elsewhere in the state, nearly all of southeastern Utah is classified as “Extreme Drought,” and half of Sanpete County and half of San Juan County are classified as “Exceptional Drought.” 

Tooele City’s average high temperature for July was 95.5 degrees and the average low was 66.9 degrees.

The temperature soared to a high of 103 on July 6 and hit 101 on July 8. The coolest maximum temperature was 86 on July 1. It was the only day in July that the high did not exceed 90 degrees.

The warmest minimum temperature was 77 on July 7, and the coldest minimum temperature was 53 on July 2.

The Natural Resources Conservation Service’s Utah climate and water report indicated that current Utah reservoir storage is at 65 percent compared to 70 percent last year. Grantsville Reservoir currently is at 36-percent capacity compared to 55-percent capacity at this time last year, according to NRCS. Settlement Canyon Reservoir is at 35-percent capacity compared to 70-percent capacity at this time last year.

“Typically, we get some rain in late August and that would help our situation immensely,” said Bob Clegg, president of Settlement Canyon Irrigation Company.

The National Weather Service forecasts smoky conditions for Tooele Valley on Tuesday and Wednesday.

“Smoke from California, Nevada and local fires will persist into midweek due to westerly flow. There will be little improvement in smoky conditions on Wednesday,” according to the NWS.

Less additional smoke from California is expected on Thursday and Friday due to building high pressure. Smoke already present in the area will be slow to clear out. Some improvement in visibility and air quality is possible, according to the NWS.

The 2017-18 water year ends on Sept. 30. The 90-day NWS forecast for Tooele County is calling for a 50-percent chance of above normal precipitation and a 60-percent chance of above normal temperatures.


Mark Watson

Sports Editor at Tooele Transcript Bulletin
Mark directs all editorial coverage of sports in addition to reporting on a wide range of events from high school football to international racing. He has a wealth of journalism experience, having worked for four other newspapers in the state. Mark grew up in Tooele County and graduated from Grantsville High School and Brigham Young University.

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