How much rain has fallen on SLO County? Here are the latest totals

March 1, 2023

Snow falling in rural Santa Margarita


Rain, snow and heavy winds pounded San Luis Obispo County over the past five days with some areas of the county recording highest precipitation totals in decades.

For the next four days, local residents will have an opportunity to dry out before the next storm arrives on Sunday. With a stormy March in the forecast, here are the latest totals from SLO County.

Climate scientists track rain from July 1 through June 31.

Rainfall totals from July 1 through March 1, along with average yearly rainfall:

Arroyo Grande – 24.33 inches to date – average 14.09 inches

Atascadero – 22.85 inches to date – average 12.06 inches

Lopez Dam – 34.47 inches to date – average 18.48 inches

Los Osos – 26.66 inches to date – average 15.77 inches

Nipomo – 26.57 inches to date – average 12.62 inches

Oceano – 20.40 inches to date – average 12.26 inches

Rocky Butte – 69.26 inches to date – average 34.75 inches

San Luis Obispo – 27.70 inches to date – average 16.82 inches

San Simeon – 23.01 inches to date – average 15.12 inches

Santa Margarita – 35.80 inches to date – average 16.96 inches

Shandon – 16.14 inches to date – average 8.44 inches

Templeton – 25.52 inches to date – average 13.05 inches

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Thanks for providing these numbers and some good news! The average rainfall figures provided above look low for total annual rainfall for each location. Perhaps Karen could confirm that these are averages for this date…not the whole season?

These would be the percentages based on numbers provided:

Arroyo Grande – 172%

Atascadero – 189%

Lopez Dam – 186%

Los Osos – 169%

Nipomo – 211%

Oceano – 166%

Rocky Butte – 199%

San Luis Obispo – 164%

San Simeon – 152%

Santa Margarita – 211%

Shandon – 192%

Templeton – 196%

Funny how the data doesn’t mention Paso Robles nor waterbanking.

Looks like the water levels are back and the drought status is over? Wrong, the term drought has become a business enhancement for limiting water usage so that more homes can move in. Conserving water resources is for the tax revenue stream growth. How many California retirees retire in the mess they created? Enough people leave that California works hard to keep their state taxes for the California earned pension, regardless of what state you move too. So expect continued water conservation for more development and yes, you need to move long before you retire if you want to take your money with you and plan on the drought cycle to repeat itself wherever you go.

Oh no! Not water conservation AND new homes! But I’m not following the logic; corrupt bureaucats are imposing drought so that they can build more houses so they have more money so that they can leave the State when they retire but also you have to as well??

As usual the simple answer makes more sense than the conspiracy: one really wet year is great, but it’s not going to make up for 100 years of groundwater use, California is a dry state that uses a lot of water for agriculture, it’s a limited resource and conservation must be a fact of life.

I glad that my poor writing skill has conveyed my thoughts and you have followed the logic. In my years this conspiracy has come into fruitions. It’s far easier to write about what has happened than about what might. And you are correct about the decades of pulling down the basin but so far it does recharge on my side of the hill but on the coast with the most density, they are limited by what water they can suck from over here. Surely their tax-base per acre exceeds that of the rural dwellers and for that reason you have water purveyors of the north county spending millions of tax payer dollar to prevent property owners from protecting their water rights, that which came with the land they purchased and have been paying taxes based on the value of their land which has water. So yes it’s great that we are having a wet winter but some residential growth doesn’t necessarily benefit unless water is stored from rain gutter.

So your saying the “drought status” is manipulated to limit water usage, so additional homes can be built with the “saved” water, in order to increase the tax revenues, so that these revenues can fund local gov’t pensions/salaries. Am I correct?

It’s the same way that the NRC will increase allowable radiation dose limits to prevent shutdowns/eligible labor shortages, or the EPA will increase allowable toxin levels in drinking water to prevent panic.