The winter of 1997-1998 may have been the “El Niño of the Century,”
But it ended in April on a dry note.
Swamp stage is perched at an all-time May high as a result.
In terms of dry season totals, the East Broward Basin takes the cake. It recorded almost 30 inches from November through April, compared to 19 inches for Big Cypress Swamp, and 21 inches south Florida wide.
South Florida charted over 60 inches of annual rain for the first time in a decade (since the May 1997 – April 1998 water year).
The long-term annual average is around 52 inches. Last year’s total was 45 inches.
The south Florida Water Year starts anew every May 1st.
Any drops that fall from this point forward go down on the charts as wet season rains.
And by the way, mark this winter as an all new “El Niño of the Century” (in terms of winter rainfall in south Florida) since, after all, we did turn a new page on the Millennial calendar back in January 2000 … or was it January 2001 instead? Whichever the case, the new century is about 10 years old.
(Now that has me wondering about the decade’s official end: I can’t remember if we’re 5 months into a new one or still have a half year to go on the old? The precautionary principle says to go by both.)
Here’s a closer look
at the Rain Year Totals for your area.