No nothing like the midwest winters here with all their gloom and doom, endless days of no sun. LOL But we do get quite a bit of snow up in these mountains. On a good year, 80+ inches or so. Not a big fan of it, LOL, but I know we do need it. The last 5 years or so our snows add up to 6 or 8 inches for the entire winter season. I am so sorry about the loss of your trees. Us too. Entire forests have died from the bark beetle and just drought here. And what hasn't died from either of these has burned in forest fires. Wow, 5 inches of rain is dry!!! I think we also had some summers like that too. I think this summer we got about 25 inches or so. About normal. I haven't planted a garden in years because of the drought and our ground water table is getting too low. I have already burned out one well pump and one year the water was coming up brown. LOL Not good! I heard we are ALL in for a wet winter. Southern CA is supposed to have a wet winter and everybody east of you past us into the middle of Texas. So lets hope it happens!! We are in the south central mountains of NM. North of Ruidoso. Arizona got TONS of rain this summer. Way more than we did. AZ is a good choice for living!