Jefferson State: Wettest Drought in Years


Recently I’ve read in three places that California is still suffering from drought. The Los Angeles Times, the U.S. Drought Monitor and the Western Regional Climate Center in Reno all gave their assurance that this is true. In spite of heavy rains, massive snow build-up in the mountains and flooding in low-lying areas, the drought continues. Since the rain has eased up a bit since then, I presume that we have not yet escaped from the crippling effects of this drought.

Now, me being just a dumb ‘ol country boy, I have long labored under the delusion that a drought was a protracted spell of dry weather. Imagine my surprise to learn that this is not so!

I am truly grateful to these authorities for dispelling my misunderstanding. In an effort to pull myself at least partially out of the fog of ignorance, I thought it would behoove me to delve deeper into the actual meaning of the word. Fortunately, this proved not to be too difficult. Thanks to the illuminating power of the Internet, I quickly discovered that on Jan. 25 the Los Angeles Times reported, “As of Friday, the snowpack in the Northern Sierra was 117% of average for this time of year. Statewide it was 107% of the norm. . . . Shasta Dam’s reservoir, fed by the northern end of the Sacramento River and its tributaries, rose 24 feet in 10 days. But until the state’s major reservoirs return to normal levels, the drought is not over.”

So now I know what a drought actually is. Nowadays, drought means that it has not rained enough in the State of Jefferson to meet the thirst of Southern California.

Thus enlightened, I can see that it will take much more than the drowning of a few ducks and frogs to alleviate this ongoing crisis. It is a lucky thing that wiser heads than mine have prevented a premature declaration of an end to the drought. Such a mistake would not only affect the college funds of the children of drought-board members, but many others would suffer as well. Consider, for instance, the danger to all those children in Los Angeles and Orange counties who might not learn to swim if their backyard pools could not be filled! Even worse, think of the poor giant agribusiness firms that might not maximize their taxpayer-subsidized profits! The situation is more critical than I had realized.

Now that I am able to appreciate the magnitude of this problem, I have begun to prepare for the ongoing effects of this drought, should it continue at the rate it has recently. I have begun building a large boat for the safety of myself and my family. It will be 30 cubits high, 50 cubits wide, and 300 cubits long. It needs to be this big, because of the environmental issues involved. A detailed environmental assessment has revealed that to protect sensitive species, we will need to take two of each kind aboard, to protect them from the ravages of this terrible drought. This is a monumental task, but I am willing to do my part in these desperate times. Presumably there is a reward waiting at the end of the rainbow.

Photo by James Montgomery

jim-montgomery-bio-picJames Montgomery calls himself a broken-down logger/garbageman who went back to school and got a law degree.  His work is in senior services.  His interests include hiking, fishing, computers, kayaking, hunting and writing.

James Montgomery
James Montgomery calls himself a broken-down logger/garbageman who went back to school, got a law degree, and worked as a nonprofit administrator, before retiring. His interests include hiking, fishing, computers, kayaking, hunting and writing. He is now serving as president of the board of directors of Empire Recovery Center.
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16 Responses

  1. Randall R. Smith Randall R. Smith says:


    Appreciate the enlightenment and agree completely. Could anyone design a worse system of living? Resources are at one end and people at the other. They live in a desert dream world where reality and science mean nothing. Votes are everything and many here first need the sanctuary of your ark. Keep telling it like it is. Swift eventually opened some eyes in a different time when people read with understanding and compassion. Thanks.


  2. Avatar Elaine says:

    Aha! Now I understand! (Or do I??)

  3. Avatar TomS says:

    I hate it when the drought keeps coming in through my ceiling.

  4. Avatar Michele says:


    This website will assist you in tracking the specifics of the precipitation in our area on a daily basis.

    A regional assessment would concure that one wet season does not make up for three previously dry. We have not had a wet year in this area since 2006. We are currently in a drought. Let us all hope that it continues to rain generously through this late winter and spring. Let's reassess again in June in hopes that we can report an above average year of precipitation and a beginning to the end of this drought.

    Postscript: We live in a state and region that historically has periods of drought. These droughts last approximately one to four years and will then be followed by a few years of average to above average precipitation. Nature will always trump politics. . .

  5. Avatar Damon Miller says:


    Shasta Dam was built with FEDERAL money as part of the Central Valley Project. One of its primary purposes was to prevent all the water we get up here from being wasted by running straight to the sea.

    Also, please explain how water gets from the Sacramento River to Orange County; I'm genuinely curious.

    Furthermore, there is no State of Jefferson, and yes, you are "a dumb ol' country boy."

    Shame on you, Doni and Kelly, for printing this garbage.

    • Avatar JeffG says:

      "Also, please explain how water gets from the Sacramento River to Orange County; I’m genuinely curious."

    • Avatar JustinT says:

      Via pipeline and Aquaduct and other resources. Water is is a higher usage down south obviously due to the higher population. The only reason you people even exist is to provide YOUR water rights to the people of Southern/ Central California, didnt you know that. Now if you got smart and created your own 51st state, you could work out a funding agreement with the federal Government to provide water across state lines in turn for increased federal funding. I.E. take from Southern California and give wealth and prosperity to yourselves. It has been done before. California is Broke and water is the only thing you northerners have, get wise and create your State of Jefferson before we take it all!

      "Today, the Project includes 34 storage facilities, reservoirs and lakes; 20 pumping plants; 4 pumping-generating plants; 5 hydroelectric power plants; and about 701 miles of open canals and pipelines.

      The Project provides supplemental water to approximately 20 million Californians and about 660,000 acres of irrigated farmland."

  6. Avatar Kelly Brewer says:

    Gosh, you guys, where's the love for a little gentle humor from a fellow north-stater? We can't imagine anyone meant to be so rude to our guest writer. Can we get you anything… a cup of coffee, a bit of chocolate, or maybe some ice cream?

    As for the State of Jefferson, it is only a state of mind, as everyone knows, but it was an idea that had serious traction at one time. Click here for the backstory.

    Have a sunny weekend, everyone.

  7. Avatar mclisa says:

    If we didn't send the water down there, they might move up here…

  8. Avatar Steve M says:

    Here is a web page from the State that shows current storage lake levels. It is very interesting and before the current rains came ALL the central and northern lakes were very low and ALL the southern lakes were full. To the southern Californian there is no drought!! All their storage lakes were absolutely full at the height of the drought.

    Every Californian should read and learn from a great book about the history of water in the west and how it came to be the way it is. It is called Cadillac Desert by Marc Reisner. It is one of the best books I have ever read and it will change the way you look at water and water politics.

    • Avatar Richard D says:

      I agree with Steve that "Cadillac Desert" is the best book you can find on water and the politics involved. Everyone should read it. And, James, I enjoyed your article. Some readers take things waaaaay too seriously. Keep writing!

  9. Avatar Karen C says:

    Drought? I'll talk about it later after I learn how to get rid of all the mushrooms living in my yard and the moss growing on my concrete driveway and brick walkway. Holy Ark, I'm overwhelmed with all of it.

  10. Avatar Linda Schreiber says:

    According to my letter I received from NOAA, National Atmospheric and Atmospheric Administration, "NOAA is aware of a few weather modification activities taking place in California and in other western states with the intention of helping to enhance precipitation, therefore, lessenning the concern for droughts."

    It would seem to me that if these activities are going on, that would account for all the rain in a drought.

    I noticed how some days it rained right over Shasta Lake the hardest. These folks are getting really good.

    I am talking chemtrails here. Cloud seeding and rain making.

    NOAA said, "These activitities are usually funded by the individual states and performed by private businesses in the winter in order to increase mountain snowpack, the major source of water in the West."

    So what do you folks think about that?

  11. Avatar Steve "Wolfsban says:

    Best wishes to James , Karen C. , Steve M. , Justin T. , TomS. , our host Kelly and all the others in Jefferson – spring and summer will come and you'll have a front row seat to some of the prettiest scenery in the best country on Earth. Right now I'm in Arizona, it's nice, the winter is sunny and that's a real plus for my wife but we hope to get back soon to visit with family.
    Miller probably thinks himself an enlightened progressive, i suspect he's the epitome of the modern Know Nothing-elite, worshipping at the alter of the all too often bloodthirsty FEDERAL Zardoz. He's not genuinely curious, he's probably never been genuinely curious in his life, he simply making a poor attempt at being snarky. Thomas Jefferson had the quality of curiousity. The citizens of Jefferson will persevere.