Holy buckets!

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Nebraska natives know better than to complain about the rain.
Life-giving moisture falling from the skies, or lack thereof, permeates our lives in so many waves, causing massive ripples throughout both our social calendars and the local economy. It’s a given, year in and year out, that weather -- good, bad or otherwise -- is a hot topic of conversation.
But holly cow, rain is coming down in buckets this spring and summer!
Just a year or so ago we wrote about NRD water restrictions and how perilously close the Upper Big Blue District was to hitting record low aquifer levels. Had the spring readings come in just a smidgen lower last year, area producers and communities that rely on the precious underwater reservoir would have had to deal with strict water allocations, which have been a harsh reality in western Nebraska for decades.
What a difference a year makes!
After one of the wettest Mays in recent memory, that outlook is drastically different now, though the rain has come down so heavy at times that it saturated the soil and spilled over the river banks. Drought headlines have been replaced by flood stories even here in Hamilton County. Whoever put this moisture order in should have been a little more specific to spread it out, mixed in with equal parts of sunshine.
The net result has been cancelled ballgames, fewer afternoons at the swimming pool and lawns that have never looked so good. It’s a Catch 22, however, as farmers are now looking out over their fields wondering what in Thunder Nation is going on. Though most of the fields are planted, those baby corn and beans need sunshine in a hurry and some low-lying fields are already iffy at best.
The irony of ironies in western Nebraska and northeast Colorado is that many dryland acres have yet to be planted because it just never stopped raining long enough to put seeds in the ground. Wow. I grew up in that part of the country and don’t ever remember that happening.
Mr. Weather Man tells us we could be in for above-normal rainfall throughout the summer, so this canoe ride could be a long ways from over. The bottom line is we’ll take the rain and bite our bottom lip not to complain, silently praying that the drops fall fewer and a little farther in between.
Kurt Johnson

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