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After Last Year's Drought, Snow's a Welcome Sight at Ski Resort

November 01, 2002|From Associated Press

DENVER — What a difference a year makes: The Wolf Creek Ski Resort opened Thursday with a 50-inch base on top.

Last year, as a record drought took hold, Wolf Creek opened Nov. 22 with 4 inches of snow on top. It usually gets the deepest snowfall of all Colorado resorts.

Although it doesn't mean the drought is over, or even subsiding yet, the precipitation recorded at several Colorado major river basins was near or above the 30-year average.

"We are excited because we are opening a week before we are scheduled," said Melissa Arnold, spokeswoman for the resort.

Wolf Creek has already received 73 inches of snow, compared with 238 last year. Its average is 465 inches.

The National Oceanic and Atmosphere Administration has forecast that El Nino could mean more snowfall than usual in southern Colorado and other Southwestern areas. The effects of the phenomenon decline farther north.

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