Rainfall amounts in excess of an inch that were spread about Custer County a few days ago have been a boon for the playa wetlands of the West Table.
"These pictures do not capture the size nor number of the playas, there are so many, it is outstanding!" said Maxine and Ed Wehling, residents of the area. "We had tornadic activity near us, around the Arnold area, to our west about 20 miles. We received 1.20" of rain, and no damage" at our vineyard.
The following are the rainfall amounts for June 24th reported to the National Weather Service office at North Platte. Each measurement was the 24-hour rainfall furnished by an observer for the Nebraska Rainfall and Information Network.
0700 AM HEAVY RAIN 10 SW ANSELMO 41.52N 100.00W 06/24/2009 M1.07 INCH CUSTER NE PUBLIC 0700 AM HEAVY RAIN 1 W SARGENT 41.64N 99.39W 06/24/2009 M1.03 INCH CUSTER NE PUBLIC 0700 AM HEAVY RAIN 6 SSW BERWYN 41.27N 99.54W 06/24/2009 M1.02 INCH CUSTER NE PUBLIC 0700 AM HEAVY RAIN 8 NE OCONTO 41.22N 99.65W 06/24/2009 M1.54 INCH CUSTER NE PUBLIC 0700 AM HEAVY RAIN 2 N BROKEN BOW 41.43N 99.64W 06/24/2009 M1.03 INCH CUSTER NE PUBLIC 0700 AM HEAVY RAIN ARNOLD 41.42N 100.19W 06/24/2009 M1.38 INCH CUSTER NE PUBLIC
The recent rainfall event continues the regular precipitation that the Wehlings have noted for the past month.
The playa wetlands "have been energized for the last month or more, as we have had consistent, ample rains," the Wehlings said, and provided some photographs to illustrate the water conditions.
A playa wetland just south of the Wehling Vineyards, shown in the background. A pair of ducks is present on the water in the second image. Last month, two Great Blue Herons stayed for about a week or more in this playa, the Wehlings said.
"A portion of the large playa that supported the whooping crane pair this past April, 2009. In the background, is a cell tower to the left, and to the right is a MET(eorological) tower British Petroleum Alternative Energy had installed in the 2005-2006 time frame."