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It was hot and dry here today, so I did a few searches on our moisture situation in the last few years.

In 2003, 2004, and 2005 up to today, if you add the total precip for that time, and compare it to average, we are down one years worth of moisture in that time. That may not sound so bad, but our normal is not much to brag about in the first place. 2000, and 2002 were two of the drier years we have had, but I could not get the data for those years. 2002 was very dry with closer to 5 inches than 10 for the year.

I think our water systems that we have put in the last few years where we really don't rely on dams anymore have helped us out hugely. Dams are dry or very low here.

The funny thing is that our calf weights have improved on average over that period, and our pasture conditions are ok, except for 2002 when it really never greened up, and we ran on old grass that year mostly. Rotational grazing has been a great benefit because of the water we developed recently. Funny thing is our area can grow fair grass if we get some rain in the early growing season, which we did get this year. But this year the reporting station reports 5.79 inches for the year to date. So you can see it came at the right time.

This is getting kind of long here, but my point is that new ways of management have allowed us to so far get through this drought fairly well. In my grandfathers time, they would have just shipped out and took their stock to grass and water till it rained. (which they did do)

Any other moisture comparisons or drought stories? FH has probably gotten more rain this year than we have in several, and I am glad for her. And that is not so far from here as the crow flies.


Well-known member
Feb 14, 2005
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Western South Dakota
So far this year we've had just a little over 10 inches. Go east and/ or north just a few miles and it's a totally different picyure. I ain't complainin tho', cuz I got 20 inches last year when most got 15.

I've done the water line thing too and it sure is a good deal. But I'd still like to see some dams and waterholes get some water in them. Never really ran any water here this year and dang little last year. Guess we need a wet fall and a snowy winter/spring so as to gewt run off. Hate to see it, but I always say, if you don't like hot or cold or wind, you probably shoiuldn't live around here! :lol:

Faster horses

Well-known member
Feb 11, 2005
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NE WY at the foot of the Big Horn mountains
We have lived here since 1993 (which was a wonderful year~) and some folks mentioned to us that the odd years were the best years for moisture. That has been TRUE, without exception since we have lived here. 2005 has been the best year of all for EARLY moisture. In 1993, the rains didn't start until the end of May, if I recall correctly. And that has happened a lot.

There are differing amount of moisture recorded. The paper has it at 17 inches plus; the tv has it at almost 20". Obviously they get their measurements from different places.

It was hot here today, too. I can't believe the way the pastures are holding up. Still green and the draw bottoms all have good grass in them. Sure is nice to see it like that!

We need a good rain, though, and it could come anytime. Would sure keep the grass coming.

We have put in some pipelines, too. And we have artesian wells, so don't have to depend on resevoirs in any pasture. But the resevoirs are full. The ones that drain off the gumbo never look too appetizing, but they are full of water.

I think this is the "next year" we are always waiting for!!

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