Predicting profiles of snowdrifts in topographic catchments

TitlePredicting profiles of snowdrifts in topographic catchments
Publication TypeConference Proceedings
Year of Conference1975
AuthorsTabler, R. D.
Conference Name43rd Annual Western Snow Conference
Series TitleProceedings of the 43rd Annual Western Snow Conference
Date PublishedApril 1975
PublisherWestern Snow Conference
Conference LocationCoronado, California
KeywordsDrifting snow, Snow fence

A regression model was developed that requires only terrain data to estimate snowdrift profiles. Results from sites in Wyoming and Colorado show drift slopes to be influenced by the terrain from 45 m (150 ft) upwind to an equal distance downwind of the catchment lip. Observed drift profiles are closely duplicated when the regression equation is used to predict the slope of successive profile increments. Results are compared to those of Finney's wind tunnel experiments.The Wyoming Highway Department is presently making this analysis a part of their earthwork computer program to help design drift-free roads. Among many other possible applications is the development of criteria for reshaping strip-mined terrain to maximize on-site retention of snowfall and regulate its areal distribution. A progam listing is given for the Hewlett-Packard 9820A calculator and 9862A plotter.