I got up early (before 4 AM) to catch the 5:45 flight to Denver. Now I'm sitting in DIA waiting for a flight to Gunnison. Tomorrow we ski back into RMBL to resume the marmot study. It's always weird not knowing really what to expect. Who survived the winter. Who didn't. This year has been a record year of very little snowfall (the worst snowpack since 1976). As billy writes on the Gothic Weather page:
The least snowfall ever in a winter was 1976-77 which had 474 cm (186½"), a record i doubted would ever be beaten. As you can see from above, this winter now needs 10" more snow or it becomes the winter with the least snowfall. HOWEVER, the 1976-77 winter had a total of 11.60" of water from snow and this winter has already gone far past that so in reality this will NOT be the driest snow winter, just- maybe- the winter with the least amount of snowfall.
It's forecast to snow on/off all day tomorrow with wind gusts, and then the temperature will drop to the teens. Welcome back to Gothic...
I'm around for a week, opening my cabin (usually this is a euphemism for fixing the plumbing!), and training folks before heading back to LA next Weds. We were hoping to have 4 people working this spring but, for a variety of reasons, only Dana, Trey, and Alyssa will be there for the first month. They will get to see Gothic come alive, figure out who has survived, and hang with our resident coyotes before more people arriving in the valley scare them into the shadows.
This is my favorite time of year. Quiet. Cool. And, oh so very interesting.