Got water?


Depending on where you live in West Texas, the answer just might be yes.

Last weekend, southbound travelers on Highway 90 in the Lobo area, may have thought, “Wow, I didn’t know there was such a large river here.”  The “river” was actually a drainage culvert north of the Brookshire Pecan Farm which appeared to be overflowing and flooding the orchard.

Traveling to the west on FM 1523, the normally arid desert and farm land sparkled with dancing waves of amber. It was the sun lit reflections of standing water, and not amber waves of grain.

Thankfully, the larger dips in the road are marked on the side with flood stage gauges. Although water had possibly reached above the four-foot level at its peak, it was receding by late afternoon Saturday to just under three feet, but still impassable.

In town, the wet and rainy week brought closure to a long-time unanswered question: “If it rains, will my roof leak?”

Several business owners, optimistically happy to see the moisture, placed buckets on the floor to mark locations of needed roof repairs.

In general, the perception of West Texas is an arid mountainous desert terrain. But in reality, the town of Van Horn could boast an above-average desirable climate.

According to Sperling’s Best Places, Culberson County gets only about 11 inches of rain per year, making it a comfortably dry environment.

The United States’ average is 37 inches. And 3 inches of snowfall is just enough to say there are four seasons. The average U.S. city gets 25 inches of snow per year. (No thanks.) The total number of days with any measurable precipitation is 46.  On average, there are 291 sunny days per year in the county. The July high averages around 94 degrees. The January low is barely freezing at 29 degrees.

The best news though is the comfort index, which is based upon humidity during the hot months. It’s a comfortable 48 out of 100, where higher is more comfortable.
The U.S. average on the comfort index, a mere 44. Clearly, Van Horn has a better than average comfortable climate.  Just something positive to think about the next time it’s too hot, too cold, too windy, too wet, too dry, or too anything else you want to complain about. But, the weather has always been a great conversation starter.


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