Colorado River District to host annual “Know Your Snow” webinar Feb. 19

Huge amounts of snowfall, nearly a foot in both Meeker and Rangely over the course of a week, has made for excellent sledding conditions. CAITLIN WALKER PHOTO
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RBC I The snow falling on the West Slope this winter will turn into the water we drink, play on and grow our food with this spring. The community is invited to learn more about Western Colorado’s snowpack during the Colorado River District’s second annual “Know Your Snow” webinar.

Join the River District at noon Wednesday, Feb. 19 for “Know Your Snow.” The webinar will feature presentations from Colorado River District Deputy Chief Engineer Dave Kanzer and Dr. Jeffrey Deems, a research scientist at the National Snow and Ice Data Center. “Know Your Snow” is free to attend, though you must register online at bit.ly/KnowYourSnow. A recording of the webinar will also be emailed to registrants after the event.

“Know Your Snow” will highlight the latest research in snow science and the connections between snowpack and water supplies on Colorado’s Western Slope. Webinar participants will have a better understanding of our snow hydrology and its impact upon our water supplies in the face of our warming climate. They’ll also hear updates on current snowpack and snow monitoring on the West Slope.

Over the last 20 years, snow scientists like Kanzer and Deems have noted that things are changing, causing water managers to grow concerned. Already, the Colorado River District is studying the risks to our snowpack and water supply to plan for an uncertain future.

“Snowfall and snowmelt patterns are less predictable,” Kanzer said. “Our water supply systems were designed and built in response to historical patterns, and they may also need to adapt and change. We’re seeing shorter snow accumulation seasons, more precipitation falling as rain and snow accumulating in smaller ranges on the mountainside. With these changes, we need to change our approaches to managing our water supply.”

“Know Your Snow” will explore these changes and how we might adapt.

“In this presentation, we will be ‘connecting the drops’ and exploring how our river flows and water supplies in Colorado are linked to seasonal weather patterns,” Kanzer said.

Register for the webinar online at bit.ly/KnowYourSnow.