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Morning photo: Leaves

falling …

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Ever since the U.S. Forest Service added this fence, this has become one of may favorite spots for landscape photos. The fence adds a strong linear element to the scene.

FRISCO — Getting one last look before the incoming winter season knocks the last of the colors off the branches, and trying to look for these spectacular autumn leaves in a new way … Continue reading

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Historic Alpine glacier decline linked with soot

Study shows pollution melted glaciers even as temperatures cooled

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Atmospheric pollution in the form of soot from fossil fuel combustion, apparently caused a rapid retreat of Alpine glacers even as regional temperatures cooled at the start of the Industrial age. Photo courtesy NASA Earth Observatory.

By Summit Voice

FRISCO — Matching climate records with ice core samples, scientists say the rapid retreat of Alpine Glaciers in Europe at the end of the Little Ice Age was probably linked with the sudden accumulation of soot particles associated with the beginning of the industrial Age.

Soot from industrial sources and even from wildfires has recently been implicated in the darkening of the Greenland ice sheet, leading to increased surface melt.

The new study helps resolve what had been a puzzle, as the sudden glacier decline coincided with a period of cooling regional temperatures. Between 1860 and 1930, temperatures in Europe cooled by nearly two degrees, yet at the same time, any large valley glaciers retreated by an average of about 0.6 miles (1kilometer).

“Something was missing from the equation,” said lead author Tom Painter, a snow and ice scientist at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California. The study was published Sept. 2 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. Continue reading

Colorado resorts report modest growth in skier visits

A strong spring season helped boost skier visits to Colorado ski areas.

A strong spring season helped boost skier visits to Colorado ski areas. Bob Berwyn photo.

Strong spring fuels rebound

By Bob Berwyn

FRISCO — Visits to all Colorado ski areas recovered from another slow start, reversed last season’s downhill slide and rebounded 3.95 percent to pass last winter’s totals, according to figures released this week by Colorado Ski Country USA. Visits to all Colorado resorts totaled 11.44 million during the winter of 2012-2013.

For the 21 areas that are members of CSCUSA, visits totaled 6.4 million, up about 3.8 percent (about 235,000 skier visits) from the previous season.

Colorado resorts outperformed the rest of the Rocky Mountain region, which tallied a 1.9 percent increase, but fell short of the national overall increase of 11 percent. The biggest growth nationally was in the Pacific Southwest and Northeast regions, which showed increases of more than 20 percent as they rebounded from a horrible snow year the previous season. Continue reading

Morning photo: Winter’s last gasp?

Never say never …

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North Tenmile Creek, Frisco, Colorado.

FRISCO — At this point, I’m almost afraid to say it’s the last snowstorm of the season because it feels like it could keep snowing all summer. We’ve had years like this before — old-timers may remember a 12-inch dump up at A-Basin in the early 80s, and we’re in a weird phase of hemispheric circulation that doesn’t lend itself to predictability. But what the heck, snow is beautiful any time of year. It doesn’t really feel out of place here at nearly 2 miles elevation, even though it’s May. In this set, I tried to capture some of the feel of the wet spring snow with some iPhone closeups, which sounds easier than it is. For all its charms, the iPhone camera’s spot sensor can be tricky when you get within a few inches of a subject. Please visit our online FineArt America gallery for a selection of stunning Summit County landscapes. Continue reading

Morning photo: One more time …

Snowy bliss

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Shooting into the sun can be dicey, but sometimes it’s worth the try.

FRISCO — I’m still shorting through shots from our early May snowstorm and working up a few edits of the iPhone and DSLR shots, including the top image, which is literally a roadside view right here in our Frisco neighborhood, if you know where to look. I used an iPhone for the scene, but instead of using an Instagram filter to try and lighten up the foreground, I ran it through the iPhoto program on my laptop to try and preserve some of the snoothness that gets lost in Instagram sometimes. The rest of the images were all taken with the Nikon. Continue reading

Morning photo: Going with the flow …

Winter hangs on

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No, it’s not cotton. It’s fresh snow piling up on aspen catkins.

FRISCO — Another day, another snowstorm in Summit County, but the good thing is, you don’t really hear anyone complaining about the snow. Well, maybe a few good-natured comments about flip-flops and bikes, but for the most part, people are quite aware that these April storms are the only thing standing between us and extreme summer drought. As far as photography, you just gotta go with the flow — or with snow, in this case. Continue reading

Morning photo: Spring? Not so fast

Better late than never …

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Sunrise lights up the Gore against the backdrop of an incoming storm.

FRISCO — March arrived with a wintry punch last weekend, delivering a blast of much-needed snow to the high country of Colorado. It wasn’t a big storm in the scheme of things, but after a dry January and a so-so February, the freshies were more than welcome. Continue reading

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