This graph shows the precipitation history recorded by the Alberta Agriculture weather station at Hespero, west of Sylvan Lake from Jan 1 to September 3, 2018. We assume that those observations are representative of those for our watershed as it is the closest station, and generally upwind:
The early-season deficit is about 8 cm. That explains the dry conditions in Central Alberta and the relatively slow increase in Sylvan Lake level. Low daily precipitation rates also prevent soil saturation and runoff into tributaries so surface flows and discharge into the lake have also been very low to date.
This graph will be update periodically. Readers who want current data should view this web page: https://agriculture.alberta.ca/acis/alberta-weather-data-viewer.jsp
The Alberta Agriculture Moisture Situation Updates are also posted for easy access: http://www1.agric.gov.ab.ca/$department/deptdocs.nsf/all/ppe9917
Get the “big picture” from the Alberta Agriculture’s Climate Information Service: https://agriculture.alberta.ca/acis/