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Snowpack at record levels

Herald and News 4/2/08

   MEDFORD (AP) — Oregon’s heavy winter has left the often-dry southern part of the state with a generous, even stunning, topping of snow.
   Snow ranger Steve Johnson has been taking measurements for 20 years, but he couldn’t believe what he saw Monday at the Siskiyou Summit on the Oregon-California border.
   The snow-water content where Interstate 5 tops the Siskiyous near the California border was 559 percent of normal. The measurement of 17.9 inches broke a 56 -year- old record of 17.4 inches for the end of March.
   “I took a couple of extra measurements to see if I read it right,” he said. “Then, when I came back down from higher on the mountain, I took two more measurements. They all came out the same.”
   Snow surveyors measure the water content by pushing a hollow tube through the snow to the ground and then weighing the snow core sample.
   Readings in other parts of Oregon have been heavy, as well, Johnson said.
   “We’re sitting really good for summer water right now,” he said.
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