March ends as the third driest on record at PDX with 1.46 inches of total rainfall. Precipitation since January 1st is 6.21 inches, which is only 51 percent of normal. Average precipitation for the first quarter is 12.22 inches. The lack of moisture is the third driest start to a calendar year since airport records began in 1941. The driest January - March occurred in 1985, when total precipitation was 4.93 inches. Below are locations setting a record for dry weather January 1st through March 31st:
1. Downtown Portland: Record dry total 2013: 6.99 inches / 2nd driest 7.60 - 1929
2. Hillsboro: Record dry total 2013: 5.15 inches / 2nd driest 6.51 - 1985
3. McMinnville: Record dry total 2013: 4.60 inches / 2nd driest 5.21 - 2009
4. Salem: Record dry total 2013: 5.25 inches / 2nd driest 5.85 - 2001
Vancouver finished with the 2nd driest total of 6.14 inches. The driest first quarter is 6.11 inches, back in 1929. Current forecast charts show below normal rainfall through April 20th.
KGW Meteorologist Rod Hill