US Southwest Hits Impressive Rainfall During Summer 2021

FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. (AP) — Cities across the U.S. Southwest hit impressive rainfall totals this summer, bringing much-needed — but temporary — relief to a region that has been mired in drought.

The winter, however, could be disappointing, with an expected weather pattern that typically means less snowpack that rivers and streams rely on, weather experts said.

The annual rainy period known simply as “the monsoon” ended Thursday with widespread precipitation across New Mexico and Arizona, including snow in higher elevations. The seasonal weather pattern starts in mid-June and brings high hopes for rain but doesn’t always deliver.

This year, it did but not equitably.

Payson, about an hour and a half drive north of Phoenix, had more than twice its normal rainfall, logging it’s wettest monsoon on record with nearly 15 inches (38 centimeters). Farther east, Show Low’s rain also hit a record 12.5 inches (31.7 centimeters). In the desert of southern Arizona, Tucson recorded its third-wettest monsoon, with 12.7 inches (32.5 centimeters).