How Dry Is It?
Abnormally Dry Conditions
At times, below normal precipitation will lead to a lack of ground water and worsening drought conditions in Arkansas. Check out the latest conditions below.
 
Monitoring Drought in Arkansas
 
Drought Status
 
Please Note: Until drought conditions return, this page will be updated once a month. The next update is scheduled for February 4, 2016.
 
There was no drought in Arkansas on 12/29/2015.

There were no drought conditions in Arkansas to end 2015.

 
Drought Conditions (Percent Area)
Category Coverage
None 100.00%
D0-D4 0%
D1-D4 0%
D2-D4 0%
D3-D4 0%
D4 0%
In the picture: There was no drought in Arkansas on 12/29/2015.
 
 
Drought conditions as of 12/29/2015.
In the picture: Drought conditions as of 12/29/2015.
 

Across the United States, the most significant drought issues were in the west. Exceptional drought (D4) conditions continued in California and western Nevada.

Here at home, it was a record wet November, and there was plenty of precipitation in December. In the latter month, parts of the northwest got more than double the normal liquid. This included Fayetteville (Washington County), Fort Smith (Sebastian County), and Harrison (Boone County). 

 

Precipitation in December, 2015
Site Amount Normal +/- % of Normal
Fayetteville (NW AR) 10.95 3.24 +7.71 338%
Harrison (NC AR) 8.44 3.20 +5.24 264%
Jonesboro (NE AR) 6.37 4.77 +1.60 134%
Fort Smith (WC AR) 10.81 3.29 +7.52 329%
Little Rock (C AR) 8.38 4.97 +3.41 169%
West Memphis (EC AR) 4.28 5.42 -1.14 79%
Texarkana (SW AR) 5.98 5.05 +0.93 118%
El Dorado (SC AR) 8.06 5.18 +2.88 156%
Pine Bluff (SE AR) 5.34 5.44 -0.10 98%

 

For the year, most of Arkansas had above to much above normal precipitation. Many locations in the north/west had more than a foot of surplus water.

 

Precipitation in 2015
Site Amount Normal +/- % of Normal
Fayetteville (NW AR) 65.71 48.51 +17.20 135%
Harrison (NC AR) 62.64 44.14 +18.50 142%
Jonesboro (NE AR) 64.53 48.10 +16.43 134%
Fort Smith (WC AR) 73.93 45.46 +28.47 163%
Little Rock (C AR) 61.23 49.75 +11.48 123%
West Memphis (EC AR) 49.04 52.23 -3.19 94%
Texarkana (SW AR) 63.54 49.65 +13.89 128%
El Dorado (SC AR) 59.94 52.92 +7.02 113%
Pine Bluff (SE AR) 51.31 51.15 +0.16 100%

 

Drought outlook through March, 2016.
In the picture: Drought outlook through March, 2016.
 

It appears that the drought in the western U.S. will persist in the coming months, but there should be some improvement. No drought conditions are expected locally through March, 2016.

Drought has been a common theme locally since 2010. The southwest has fared the worst, with slightly more than a six foot (73.11 inches) rainfall deficit at Texarkana (Miller County) in a five year span (through 2014).

 

Precipitation Statistics (2010-2014)
Site 2014 +/- 2013 +/- 2012 +/- 2011 +/- 2010 +/-
Fayetteville (NW AR) 39.08 -9.43 46.63 -1.88 34.29 -14.22 56.15 +7.64 42.15 -3.87
Harrison (NC AR) 41.20 -2.94 45.26 +1.12 29.53 -14.61 52.01 +7.87 46.12 +0.92
Jonesboro (NE AR) 44.15 -3.95 52.42 +4.32 33.57 -14.53 58.05 +9.95 32.22 -13.96
Fort Smith (WC AR) 42.14 -3.32 47.05 +1.59 33.94 -11.52 46.56 +1.10 35.27 -8.60
Little Rock (C AR) 48.13 -1.62 52.78 +3.03 42.25 -7.50 60.23 +10.48 36.52 -14.41
West Memphis (EC AR) 49.08 -3.15 54.47 +2.24 39.08 -13.15 55.95 +2.37 51.83 -0.97
Texarkana (SW AR) 35.24 -14.41 45.34 -4.31 32.07 -17.58 30.69 -18.96 29.53 -17.85
El Dorado (SC AR) 41.03 -11.89 47.49 -5.43 44.41 -8.51 37.62 -15.30 34.23 -19.88
Pine Bluff (SE AR) 41.41 -9.74 52.66 +1.51 45.69 -5.46 48.70 -2.45 31.97 -20.51

 

There were some drought breakers along the way, such as a deluge from mid-November to mid-December, 2011.

 

Thirty day rainfall through 600 am CST on 12/11/2011. Twelve to more than eighteen inches of rain was measured from Mena (Polk County) to Mount Ida (Montgomery County), Russellville (Pope County), Little Rock (Pulaski County), Jonesboro (Craighead County) and West Memphis (Crittenden County).
In the picture: Thirty day rainfall through 600 am CST on 12/11/2011.

 

Hurricane Isaac brought much needed rain to southern and eastern Arkansas in late August, 2012. Pine Bluff (Jefferson County) had 8.39 inches in the forty eight hour period ending at 700 am CDT on September 1st.

Hurricane Isaac was just off the coast of Louisiana at 425 pm CDT on 08/28/2012.
In the picture: Hurricane Isaac was just off the coast of Louisiana at 425 pm CDT on 08/28/2012.

 

In September, 2013, areas from Little Rock (Pulaski County) southward got two to four inches of rain, with locally over six inches on the 19th/20th. Some of these amounts exceeded what would normally be expected during the entire month. This busted a short term extreme (D3) drought that peaked just a few days prior to the rain.

 

Precipitation Trends

 

Streamflow and Soil Moisture
 
Most recent streamflow (values in the 25th to 75th percentile are normal)
Most recent soil moisture (values between 30 and 70 percent are normal)

 

Fire Danger

 

The Forecast

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