I've been surfing the web for hydrology information on rivers in the West and California. Also, I've been looking at the weather predictions for this winter. A dry winter has set upon us as we remember the last two winters of huge snow packs and relentless rain. Is it global warming or is it just the natural cycle of the weather out here in the West? Most weather and hydrology sites seem to say that the weather has been actually quite normal out here this year. Some have even said that we would have a lot of precipitation next month and into March.
Here is a listing of sites that were interesting enough for me to spend quite a bit of time with as I looked at the Farmers Almanac to the National Weather Service. I'm having a good read outdoors in the hammock since the weather has been just incredibly beautiful!
I particularly like the weather map at the NOAA site showing normal river flows for this time of the year. The map is updated every 10 minutes, so it'll be a good one to bookmark to view throughout the river rafting season... especially for those who are planning group rafting trips. Normal flows mean that the river will be better suited for youth groups, families and corporate groups.
For extreme whitewater paddlers, you probably got your fix the last two years. This year is the time to drag those beginners and novices to go rafting. Introduce your buddies to whitewater rafting this year and get them ready for the big stuff later.