A year ago, I walked the banks of the Ninnescah River, which was nothing but a dry bed of sand, except for a few puddles were carp were trying to survive. Trees and weeds filled sand bars. And the triple-digit temperatures and no rain continued to dry up the river bed a little more each day.
A year later, I walked the banks of wide flowing river. The Ninnescah mid-afternoon Monday was flowing at 331 cubic feet per second, well above the average flow of about 40 cfs for this time of year.
A year ago, I saw the Arkansas River reach record lows, falling to 20 cfs, the lowest in 52 years of record keeping, beating the previous record of 27 cfs set in Oct. 1980.
On Monday, the river was flowing at 343 cfs and climbing as rain loomed in forecast for that evening and today.
South-central Kansas is becoming less parched, albeit slowly.
It’s been a rough couple of years, after all. Little rainfall and hot temperatures zapped farm fields and water supplies.
A year ago, the high was 107 degrees and the low 75. On Monday, the high was 83 degrees.
In 2011, we had 23 days where the mercury soared over 100 degrees and in 2012, we had 20. This year, we have had just had six.
There won’t be any car cooking at The News this year.