DENVER (CBS4) – For the first time since the summer of 2020, exceptional drought has vanished from the high country this week but drought still increased statewide.

A week ago about 75% of Colorado had at least moderate drought. Now it’s about 78%. The severe drought category also jumped slightly to about 30% of the state.

Sunshine Thursday morning along Colorado’s Front Range. The next chance for any moisture in the metro area is at least a week ago (source: CBS)

The good news is the two worse drought categories (extreme and exceptional) finally decreased. Exceptional drought which has plagued northwest Colorado for 15 months disappeared this past week thanks to significant rain and snow in that part of the state. That region now has mostly extreme drought which covers about 7% of the state.

(source: CBS)

It’s a different story in the Denver metro area where drought has become worse. In the past week severe drought that first appears two weeks ago expanded farther east across Adams and Araphoe Counties and now includes virtually the entire Denver metro area. The only exception in Douglas and Elbert Counties where moderate drought continues.

(source: CBS)

The last time the drought was this bad in the Denver area was about 8 months ago before significant moisture reached the Front Range in March, April and May.

Looking forward, the chance for any moisture along the urban corridor in the next 7-10 days is slim. There is a small chance for light rain next weekend but probably not anything measurable. The entire state should remain dry (and mild for November!) through at least Monday.

Meteorologist Ashton Altieri