"Warm Springs Linked to Dwindling Snow in Rockies"

"Snow cover across the entire Rocky Mountain range has been shrinking due to warmer spring temperatures over the past 30 years, a new study finds."

"Researchers at the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) studied historic snowpack variations in the Rocky Mountains and found that warmer spring temperatures since 1980 are triggering an estimated 20 percent decline in snow cover throughout the range, which runs for more than 3,000 miles (4,800 kilometers) in western North America.

The scientists used monthly temperature and precipitation data from 1895 to 2011 to build models of snow cover in the Rocky Mountains. This enabled them to see long-term trends, including how fluctuations in winter temperatures, spring temperatures and precipitation are influencing the region's snowpack."

Denise Chow reports for LiveScience May 14, 2013.

Source: LiveScience, 05/16/2013