It is no secret that California is in a major drought. There are all kinds of restrictions on how much water to use, what you can use it on and many people finding their wells going dry. Wine country has been no stranger to this or the hard balance in watering their precious vines vs. conserving for the future. To say it lightly, we have been drinking more wine than water out here and it has been a scary realization seeing lakes dry up, vacant creek beds and bug infestations looking for water. It effects our wildlife, our parks, our farmers, our residents and our businesses. So to say that we are excited about the current rain is an understatement!
Only 1.41 inches fell from July 2013 to February 2014 when our average normal rainfall for the season is about 8 inches. These dry seasons have built up over the last couple of droughts and now we are needing some major catch up! To get there we would need 150% of our average seasonal rainfall which equals a storm every 3-5 days for the next three months. Sounds like Washington weather, but not so much for sunny California!
Fortunately we are seeing some hope in those beautiful silver linings stretching across the vines. So far there is .77 inches in Paso Robles, .52 in Atascadero and .55 in Santa Margarita. With more rain on the way this week and next, as well as a wet winter prediction, we can start chipping away at the deficit that plagues our dry land and aquifers. Dry farmers are doing rain-dance celebrations and winemakers are posting weather reports all over social media in appreciation of the rains to come.
Paso Robles will continue to produce outstanding wines, now with more mineral layers and even better varietals since the grapes will be very flavorful and meticulously cared for. The restaurants will be coming out with fresh produce, supporting local fare and greeting visitors with an even bigger smile and a glimmer in their eye. Keep your fingers crossed for rain, the more water we can save, the more everyone benefits.