On behalf of Jeff Derry, Holiday Greetings from Silverton -
Given Jeff's travel to and attendance of the American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting in San Francisco, Andrew Temple and I (Chris Landry) collected a sample of the first discernible dust-on-snow event of the season (D1-WY 2016) today at the Senator Beck Basin Swamp Angel Study Plot at Red Mountain Pass.
This moderately heavy event was deposited during the early hours of Winter Storm #6 on December 11-12.
Given the dust layer's location near the base of the snowpack, D1-WY2016 will have comparatively minor impacts on next spring's snowmelt runoff cycle, as the last layer to merge with the overlying layers during the snowcover ablation process.
Although not common, CSAS has logged a number of December dust-on-snow events since WY2005 - this is the fifth such December event.
This event occurred under moderately strong S'ly winds (see windrose below)