With a high-pressure ridge expected to persist another day or so before cooler conditions resume, Pacific County and its neighbors in Southwest Washington are in an unusual situation for early May: the region is entirely classified as being either in moderate drought or abnormally dry. About one-fifth of the entire state is classified as being in a drought — including 60 percent of Pacific County — compared to zero percent at the same point last year. It is the earliest appearance of drought in the county since at least 2000. The area of Washington considered to be in a drought nearly doubled in the past week. It is believed that dry conditions coupled with an infestation of spruce aphids are responsible what appears to be widespread browning of mature conifers in the county.