Yosemite National Park is seeing summer-sized numbers of visitors, even on winter occasions like this past week-end's Martin Luther King Jr. Holiday. The lack of snowfall has opened up much of the park to activities usually available only other seasons.
Yosemite Park Ranger Kari Cobb says visitors can explore more of the park than what would usually be open at this time of year.
But there are downsides. Mild temperatures and lack of snow mean many bears have skipped hibernation and are foraging for food and that can bring them into contact with people.
Cobb says Yosemite Falls, one of the park's favorite attractions, could go dry by June if there is no more rain or snow.
January brought above-average rainfall and snow to much of California, partly due to El Niño. But forecasters say the ocean warming condition is "taking a break" for the next week or longer.
The U.S. Drought Monitor says, other than a slight reduction in exceptional drought in the northern Sierra, it needs more time to assess impacts of the recent moisture on California's long-term drought.
California regulators have made modest adjustments to water conservation requirements for cities.
The second measurement this winter of snowpack in the Sierra Nevada was 130 percent of average. State water officials say the snowpack will help reservoir recovery.
California's water conservation rate dropped to 18 percent in December. But water regulators say the state continues to meet its long term goals.