||Management of Windblown Alpine Snows.
Santeford, J, Henry S. ;
||Colorado State Univ., Fort Collins. Dept. of Atmospheric Science.
||AS-Paper-192; OWRR-B-073-COLO; 07151,; B-073-COLO(1)
( Snowmelt ;
Surface water runoff) ;
( Surface water runoff ;
Management planning) ;
( Water storage ;
Snow cover ;
Water conservation ;
Cost factors ;
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The runoff from alpine cirques can be successfully augmented by periodic blasting of the windblown ridgeline snow deposits into cirques. Water-budget analyses of the alpine feeder area indicate that nearly 80 percent of the seasonal precipitation is transported out of the region. Only 23 percent of this total transport (18% of seasonal precipitation) is caught in the natural cornice deposits along the ridgeline. The remaining 77 percent of the transport is believed to sublimate from both the in-place snow cover in the alpine as well as during transport over the ridgeline. Cornices are an inefficient place to store windblown snow. Less than one-third of the winter storage in these ridgeline deposits is realized as runoff. The remaining two-thirds is lost to either evapo-sublimation or late melt occurring after runoff cirque ceases. Cirque water-budget analyses show that nearly 75 percent of the water stored in the cirques during the winter period is realized as runoff during the melt period, an increase of approximately 240 acre-feed of runoff per mile of ridgeline treated, at a cost of approximately $50 per acre-cost discharged from the cirques. (Author)