Posted on April 8, 2015 by Bob Berwyn
April 1 snowpack the 3d-lowest in 30 years; state preps for low runoff and summer streamflows
Colorado snowpack started to decline in March, a month ahead of schedule.
Colorado experienced widespread warmth in March.
By Bob Berwyn
FRISCO — Colorado water users need to prepare for below-average spring and summer runoff and streamflow based on the all-important April 1 snow survey, which showed a startling drop in the state’s snowpack since early March.
After tallying readings from automated SNOTEL sites and manual snow surveys, the federal Natural Resources Conservation Service said the water content of the snowpack is just 64 percent of average, down from 89 percent at the beginning of March.
“This is showtime when it comes to hydrological cycle in Colorado,” said state climatologist Nolan Doesken, referring to the fact that the state’s snowpack usually increases significantly in March and April. Continue reading
Filed under: climate and weather, climate change, Colorado, global warming, Snow and weather, Summit County snow and weather | Tagged: climate change, Colorado, Colorado snowpack, Colorado weather, global warming, runoff, snowpack | Leave a comment »
Posted on April 6, 2015 by Bob Berwyn
Blue evening shadows.
FRISCO — Spring may be the most dynamic season for streams, ponds and reservoirs in the Colorado high country. After months of winter stasis, the lengthening days and warming temperatures bring change on a daily basis, as long-frozen surfaces suddenly turn into slushy puddles, only to refreeze at night as the temps drop just below freezing.
Additionally, the water level fluctuates beneath the ice, sometimes creating slanted surfaces that enable subsequent meltwater to flow in unusual patterns. I tried to capture some of that with the images in this set, all captured along the edge of Dillon Reservoir in the past few days. For daily photography updates, follow our Instagram feed, and visit our online gallery for an amazing selection of prints and greeting cards.
Filed under: Morning photo, photography, seasons, Snow and weather, Summit County snow and weather | Tagged: Colorado, Dillon Reservoir, spring snowmelt, Summit County photography | 1 Comment »
Posted on April 4, 2015 by Bob Berwyn
Not much relief from El Niño
This west-wide map shows that not a single river basin the West has an above-average snowpack as of April 2, 2015.
By Bob Berwyn
FRISCO — Unless there’s a drastic change in the weather the next few weeks, 2015 will become one of those poster-child years for how global warming will affect the West. By early April — when the snowpack usually peaks across the region’s mountains — many areas were already seeing a decline. In the Rocky Mountains, the snowpack in nearly every river basin was at least 30 percent below average, while picture in the Far West was even more grim. Continue reading
Filed under: climate and weather, Colorado, Environment, global warming, Snow and weather, Summit County snow and weather | Tagged: climate change, drought, global warming, The West, western snowpack, Western snowpack declining | 1 Comment »
Posted on March 20, 2015 by Bob Berwyn
Celebrate the season!
Little birdie …
At the cusp of winter and spring.
Willows and water …
Snowmelt at the edge of Dillon Reservoir.
Spring snow and sun in Summit County, Colorado.
FRISCO —We’re stepping into spring here in the Colorado high country, and right on schedule, the first western bluebirds appeared on the fringes of local forests. There are other signs as well — reflective meltwater ponds along the edge of Dillon Reservoir and budding willow shrubs. Stop whatever you’re doing today for at least a few minutes to get outside and celebrate the changing of the seasons!
Filed under: Morning photo, photography, seasons, Summit County snow and weather | Tagged: Colorado, seasons, spring, Summit County photography, vernal equinox, western bluebirds | Leave a comment »
Posted on March 10, 2015 by Bob Berwyn
Don’t fear the winter
Twilight along Meadow Creek.
First rays, Snake River.
FRISCO —After about five months of snow and cold, it’s understandable that some people might want to just curl up beneath a thick blanket for a few weeks to wait for spring. But if you do, you might miss scenes like this: Exquisite morning sunshine filtering through tall pines, the tangerine-colored glow of a winter sunset and the crumpled snow fields that look like cake frosting. Enjoy the last bits of winter, especially in the era of global warming, when winter snows seem far from a sure thing. For daily photography updates, follow our Instagram feed
, and visit our online gallery
for an amazing selection of prints and greeting cards.
Filed under: Colorado, Morning photo, photography, snow, Summit County Colorado, Summit County snow and weather | Tagged: Colorado photography, Rocky Mountains, sastrugi, Summit County, winter landscapes | Leave a comment »
Posted on March 6, 2015 by Bob Berwyn
Southern mountains get huge snowpack boost
Early March storms helped bring the Colorado snowpack to near normal.
FRISCO — Colorado’s statewide snowpack continues to track near average for the winter, as two weeks of wet weather helped especially to bolster water supplies in the southern mountains.
But despite substantial accumulations statewide, the snowpack is still below average, at 87 percent of normal as of March 1. SNOTEL data shows that, during the nine-day period of February 20 through March 1, the state received 2.0 inches of snow water equivalent, 181 percent of the normal for that period.
Preliminary numbers from early March show an additional 7 percent gain between March 1 and March 5 — but with only 20 percent of the mountain snowpack accumulation season remaining, time is dwindling to close the gap and reach typical statewide peak snowpack levels. Continue reading
Filed under: climate and weather, Colorado, Snow and weather | Tagged: climate, Colorado, Colorado reservoir storage, Colorado snowpack | 1 Comment »
Posted on January 11, 2015 by Bob Berwyn
Cool in Colorado …
When storms move in from the west overnight, sunrise opens a crack in the sky at dawn.
Blue River magic.
View of the Gore Range from Ute Pass.
Solstice glow on Swan Mountain.
FRISCO — Just a short Sunday set featuring some “leftover” images from the past couple of weeks, including the strange solstice glow of the low winter sun and a stunning sunrise over the Blue River Valley. Follow our Instagram feed
for daily updates, and visit the online Summit Voice gallery at Fine Art America
to see more Summit County nature and landscape images.
Filed under: Colorado, Morning photo, photography, seasons, Snow and weather, Summit County snow and weather | Tagged: Colorado, mountain landscapes, snow photography, solstice, Summit County photography, winter | Leave a comment »