Snowpack in San Juan Mountains remains on track for annual average


SAN JUAN MOUNTAINS — Snowpack in the San Juan Mountains and Rio Grande National Forest is average for this time of year. According to sources from Wolf Creek Ski Resort and private organizations, there is about nine and a half feet of snow still sitting on the San Juan Mountains which brings the annual snow, water equivalent to 99% of average.

Some areas throughout the western part of the state are still sitting below average and are experiencing drought-like conditions but the Upper Rio Grande District remains just below average for the year. One of the main concerns for Rio Grande National Forest lies in whether the snowpack will melt at a slower rate than normal which in turn allows the moisture in the snow to seep into the ground creating better conditions for the forest during the summer.

At this time, the Valley will most likely not experience high levels of runoff or dangerous conditions like the flooding that occurred in 2019. For the most part, hydrologists are predicting an average runoff that will melt faster than most years due to higher temperatures hitting the Valley in coming weeks.

Wolf Creek Ski Resort closed out its 2020-2021 season with a total of 362 inches which put them just shy of their annual totals of 400 inches or more. The ski resort closed their doors and stopped their lifts after one interesting season to say the least, but they ended on a high note as one of the only ski resorts in Colorado to remain open throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.

“After a very unique, yet successful ski season Wolf Creek Ski Area closed Easter Sunday, April 4, 2021,” Wolf Creek officials stated. “The 2020-2021 ski season was one of social distancing and mask wearing.  Snowfall was consistent from October thru the end of March with a number of prolific powder days, exceptional conditions and 362 inches of snowfall.”

The resort will now switch gears and begin preparing for next season while completing projects throughout the summer.

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