"The snowpack in the Rocky Mountains has been gradually thinning over much of the past century, and a new study attributes much of that to global warming.
This year is a notable exception — unusually heavy snowfall throughout the Rockies this winter has caused a lot of flooding and water-management headaches downstream. But taking the long view, the trend is toward less and less snow.
And snowpack in the Rockies isn't simply of interest to skiers and snowmobilers. 'Over 70 million people are dependent on this water,' says Greg Pederson from the U.S. Geological Survey in Bozeman, Mont. 'This water feeds the Columbia River, the Missouri and the upper Colorado, as well as the Rio Grande.'"