Satellite Photos Show How Dire Snow Conditions Are At Yosemite National Park, Sierra Range

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NOAA satellite images.

How skimpy are snow levels across the Sierra Nevada this winter? The above satellite photo pretty much sums things up. If things don't get better soon, the coming summer could produce a nasty wildfire season.

And, of course, the size of the snowpack is directly proportional to the fury of the waterfalls plunging into Yosemite Valley come spring time.

"'Sierra Nevada' means "snowy mountain range" in Spanish. But, the mountain range that's home to Yosemite isn't living up to its name so far this year, as you can see from these satellite images comparing last January with this January," reads a post on Yosemite National Park's Facebook page. "While chances are almost nil that we'll receive an average amount of precipitation this winter, February is the wettest month in Yosemite, so we can hope for a wet February."

Things aren't any better down the road in Sequoia National Park, where the mountains in the Mineral King section of the park are brown, not white as you'd expect them to be this time of year. (Photos compared January 14 from 2011 and 2014)

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National Weather Service photos.

Comments

This is a bad year up and down the west coast. Not just for the upcoming wildfire season, which is going to be just ugly, but because electricity is going to be more expensive, and because watering yards is going to be restricted, and because there's not going to be enough water for agriculture, industry, and home use.

Drought is one of the scariest natural phenomena on the planet.