We are located on the high plains and usually only get around 14 inches of precipitation in a good year. A majority of this comes in the spring in the way of big snow events. It is not uncommon to get a foot of snow in April or even May when a Pacific front comes through. We have had trees lead out early and get completely weighted down by late snow breaking branches all over the ranch. Since there are several thousand trees on the ranch, this damage can be considerable. Old pines have been know to come crashing down as a result. Early fall snow (before the leaves have fallen) also have occurred with similar ill effects for the trees. Spring snow can kill young livestock and strand adult livestock away from water and feed. The vastness of the prairie, the cold temperatures and the high wind makes for a tough place to raise a calf.
The good effects of the precipitation are that the grass will grow, the ponds will be full and the melt of will bring the soil moisture up to a point that it is tillable. Most of the fence post holes are even dug when the soil is soft in the spring. The spring snow are a very necessary evil of life in this ranch.
Extreme Summer Bad Weather