National Drought Mitigation Center
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National Drought Mitigation Center
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Subsoil moisture nonexistent; high winds and dust causing problems for agriculture in southeast Colorado
4/15/2013 4:08:47 PM



CATEGORIES:
Agriculture
Plants & Wildlife
AFFECTED AREAS:
Baca County, CO
Bent County, CO
Cheyenne County, CO
Crowley County, CO
Kiowa County, CO
Las Animas County, CO
Lincoln County, CO
Otero County, CO
Prowers County, CO
Pueblo County, CO

6/1/2011 - 4/15/2013
Drought in southeast Colorado, south of Interstate 70, is going into the third year. This winter we have have less than 0.5 inches of precipitation since last October. Subsoil moisture is nonexistent. High winds have created many blowing dust and dirt conditions on agriculture fields (from Bruce Fickensher, Colorado State University, Eads, Colorado, on April 15, 2013). Dust storms with winds up to 75 miles an hour closed highways near the Pueblo-El Paso county line and damaged farmland near Karval in Lincoln County, Colorado. "It looks like the Great Sand Dunes, but it's all agricultural lands. It's covered up with dirt ... 6-8 inches, maybe?" one farmer told Kevin Torres of 9news.com, KUSA-TV. Oldtimers said they have never seen it as bad. Topsoil was blowing away. "It's been such a bad drought that there are people starting to sell and move away from the community," a farmer said ("Some farmers dealing with "Dust Bowl" conditions," 9news.com, April 14, 2013). See also photos of dust storm in linked reports submitted via Gary McManus, Oklahoma Climatological Survey.
Sources