Dry summer shouldn't change drought conditions

We've had a very warm week temperature-wise here in the Valley and unfortunately, it looks like the high temps will be sticking around with little to no moisture in the forecast. Many people are wondering where the monsoon is at or it will ever show up.

The monsoon season has been a little non-existent so far. While many of us are keeping our fingers crossed for some relief and maybe a little rain, the good news is because of our very good winter, our drought conditions shouldn't change much, even with our very dry summer.

Many people are wondering if the non-soon streak will ever break. According to meteorologist Paul Iniguez with the National Weather Service, the leftover wind flow pattern we saw during the winder may be holding us back from getting a few drops.

"Here in the Phoenix area, I believe we've only had about a quarter of an inch of rain officially, which puts us close to being the top 10 for driest to date at this point," Iniguez said. "It's kind of kept the high pressure that we usually need to be on top of us or even north of us from building north and that in turn has stopped a lot of deep moisture from coming up into Arizona from the Gulf of Mexico and from the Gulf of California."

Iniguez also says we've seen little to no lightning in the state. This typically means the rainfall will be low.

"These records go back to 1980, so a little more 30 years and right now so far, this summer has been the least active in terms of lightning across the entire state," Iniguez explained.

So what does our lack of summer rain mean for the drought? According to meteorologist Bo Svoma with Salt River Project, not much.

"On average, we only see about 17 percent of our inflow during the monsoon season, so it's really all about the wintertime getting the inflow into our reservoirs," Svoma said.

Because of our wet and active winter, the drought conditions have significantly improved and should stay that way. 

"That's the most important aspect of the fact that we're 72 percent full this year, whereas last year at this same time, we were 49 percent full [in our] reservoirs," Svoma said.

The monsoon season officially ends September 30 and because we've already had a low season up to this point, it will most likely end that way.