Blog: Even when most of California is dry, state can have floods
Every water year is different in California, and in any water year, local and regional experiences often differ. California is a large state, far larger than most storm systems and atmospheric rivers with large topographic differences, so some parts of California are usually wetter or drier than others. Part of the rationale for California’s inter-regional water projects was to help average out geographic variability in water availability using canals, in addition to water storage which helps average water availability over time.This post examines how different parts of California often see very different water years. Last water year illustrates how different parts of California often experience substantially different hydrology. Although 2023 was among the wettest on record for the Tulare Basin, it was only middling-wet for the Sacramento Valley (but still wet enough to fill almost all its reservoirs).