There is more drought improvement to report, but the same for next week is unlikely.  Widespread drought conditions remain, but severe drought (D2) and extreme drought (D3) have been downgraded to moderate drought (D1) in approximately 50% of the southeastern area of the state which has experienced the worst dry conditions.  There is no rain forecast through the weekend or early next week and above normal temperatures in the 60s are expected, with southern parts of New Hampshire potentially seeing temperatures in the low 70s on Saturday.  Outlooks for mid-November indicate precipitation received is likely to be normal to slightly above normal. Since last week, the U.S. Monthly Drought Outlook has been released and indicates it is unlikely there will be more drought improvement by the end of the month.


ATTN: While the growing season is over, the warmer temperatures over the next few days are likely to result in an increase of outdoor water use as people head outdoors to wash cars, power wash, and tie up other fall cleanup chores.  Please keep the public reminded of outdoor water use restrictions, as well as indoor water saving tips. To date, 165 community water systems serving 345,000 people and eight municipalities with a total population of 66,000 have water use restrictions in place (Restriction List and Map).


New Monthly Groundwater Update! While the majority of the wells in the New Hampshire Geological Survey’s monitoring network are experiencing below normal to low groundwater levels, recent precipitation has raised groundwater levels in many of the wells in the northern portion of the state from low to normal.  With slightly below average precipitation in the central and southeast portions of the state, falling or below normal to low groundwater levels continue. For more information, see the New Hampshire Groundwater Level Monitoring Report for October 2020.  Reports are released monthly.


NEW! Are residential well owners experiencing well shortage issues in your community?  If so, they may qualify for the Low-Income Residential Drought Assistance Program.


Drought Guidance for the public, municipalities, and private well owners, as well as other drought information such as guidance on setting up an emergency water access location may be found on the Drought Management webpage.


Drought Update:


According to the U.S. Drought Monitor released this morning, there has been some drought improvement since last week.  7.47% of the state is categorized as “extreme drought” (D3), 9.29% of the state is categorized as “severe drought”(D2), 82.9% of the state is categorized as “moderate drought” (D1), and 0.33% is categorized as abnormally dry.

Tip* The restriction map includes town boundaries and drought categories, making it easy to identify if your municipality is experiencing drought.


Table. Percent of state in exceptional drought (D4), extreme drought (D3), severe drought(D2), moderate drought (D1), and abnormally dry (D0).


Over the past 7-days, the majority of the state received between 0.5” and 1.5” of precipitation.  Rockingham, Hillsborough, and the majority of Cheshire counties received the most, ranging between 1” to 1.5”.  Sullivan County, the western border of Grafton, the western border of Merrimack, and the majority of Coos received the least, ranging between 0.25” to 0.5” with northern parts of Coos receiving even less ranging from 0.01” to 0.25”.  The majority of Merrimack, Belknap, Strafford, Carrol, and the majority of Grafton counties received 0.5” to 1.0” (NOAA Precipitation Observed).


Over the past 30-days, all counties, have experienced normal to slightly above normal precipitation, but the longer term 90-day, 180-day, and 360-day precipitation departures remain for all counties (National Weather Service).


Forecast and Outlooks:

Above normal temperatures and dry conditions are forecast through the weekend and early next week.  A cold front is to follow later next week.  (NOAA National Weather Service Forecast & NOAA Precip Forecast).


The 6-10 day outlook strongly favors above normal temperatures and slightly favors above normal precipitation.  The 8-14 day outlook strongly favors above normal temperatures and favors normal precipitation (National Weather Service Climate Prediction Center).


New Monthly Update! According to the US Monthly and Seasonal Drought Outlook, over the next month drought conditions are likely to remain unchanged and over the next three months, drought conditions are likely to remain but improve, except for Coos County where drought removal is likely.