Storms nudge most of California out of dry category

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Recent heavy storms in California have wiped out much of the state's abnormally dry conditions. Two months ago, the U.S. Drought Monitor categorized more 81% of the state as abnormally dry because of above-normal temperatures and a lack of precipitation six weeks into the water year that started Oct. 1. The percentage climbed to 85% as recently as last week. But heavy rains throughout the state have shrunk the percentage to a sliver along the Oregon-California border. This was the 10th driest October since record-keeping began in 1895, said David Simeral, a research scientist at the Western Regional Climate Center in Reno. The category put most of the state one step above moderate drought level and indicates the soil is dry, snow pack is minimal and fire danger i
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