Item: Snow stability trends at wolf creek pass, colorado
Title: Snow stability trends at wolf creek pass, colorado
Proceedings: Proceedings of the 2000 International Snow Science Workshop, October 1-6, Big Sky, Montana
Authors: Mark Mueller, CAlC/COOT Avalanche Forecaster, Wolf Creek Pass
Abstract: While studying historical weather and avalanche data for Wolf Creek Pass (US 160), Colorado, I identified a relationship between average new snow density during a storm cycle and the average new snow density for an arbitrarily chosen seven day period immediately preceding the onset of that storm cycle. Using the reported length of the highway centerline covered with avalanche debris as a measure of avalanche intensity, lighter density snow often preceded heavier density snow during a storm and this regularly led to more avalanche activity affecting the highway. The opposite relationship led to less severe avalanching affecting the highway. At the same time, other snow stability relationships were identified. This paper will describe how these relationships were identified and are now used to assist in avalanche forecasting for Wolf Creek Pass.
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Keywords: avalanches, avalanche forecasting, snow stability, weather and avalanche historical data
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