We are constantly being bombarded with claims that western winters are warming towards 12 degrees and that skiing is doomed.
DENVER — A study of two Rocky Mountain ski resorts says climate change will mean shorter seasons and less snow on lower slopes.
The study by two Colorado researchers says Aspen Mountain in Colorado and Park City in Utah will see dramatic changes even with a reduction in carbon emissions, which fuel climate change.
If carbon emissions increase, the average temperature at Park City will be 10.4 degrees warmer by 2100, and there likely will be no snowpack, according to the study. Skiing at Aspen, with an average temperature 8.6 degrees higher than now, will be marginal.
The key to the survival of the larger ski areas in the Rockies will be adaptation, according to the study by Williams and Brian Lazar, a scientist at Boulder-based Stratus Consulting. The researchers said they expect many U.S. ski areas to follow the lead of resorts in the European Alps already dealing with snow shortages by storing water to use for snowmaking.
Actual data shows that there has been no trend in either winter temperature or snowfall at all stations which have been continuously active since at least 1920.
BOULDER CANON CITY CHEESMAN CHEYENNE WELLS COLLBRAN DEL NORTE 2E DILLON 1 E EADS FT COLLINS FT MORGAN FRUITA GUNNISON 3SW HERMIT 7 ESE HOLLY LAMAR LAS ANIMAS MANASSA MONTROSE #2 ROCKY FORD 2 SE SAGUACHE STEAMBOAT SPRINGS TELLURIDE 4WNW TRINIDAD WRAY
Here is the current view from Aspen