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State Fire Meteorologist: Rain too late for this year but might help for next year


This story is from an interview on SDPB's daily public-affairs show, In the Moment, hosted by Lori Walsh.

State Fire Meteorologist Darren Clabo says recent rainfall is too late for farmers and ranchers this growing season.

Darren Clabo

But he says it might help them in the future.

“It's not going to really impact the pretty terrible agricultural conditions that we’re seeing across central and eastern South Dakota -- well, and western South Dakota – for this year, but hopefully some of that moisture starts to settle into the soil bank and we can bring up the water tables a little bit, improve the hydrology and get those soils back into a place where going into next year, next spring, that moisture will be retained with the soil.”

Clabo says there’s not much rain in the immediate forecast.

“Unfortunately over at least the next three to four weeks, we’re tilting toward a drier and warmer-than-average period once again. It looks like for the rest of September, things could be pretty dry.”

While some places in the state received heavy rain recently, others remain far below their annual average precipitation. Huron is nearly 6 inches below average, Aberdeen is almost 4 inches below average, and Rapid City is about 2 inches below average.