The biography of snow surveying

TitleThe biography of snow surveying
Publication TypeConference Proceedings
Year of Conference1933
AuthorsChurch, J. E.
Conference Name1st Annual Western Interstate Snow Survey Conference
Series TitleProceedings of the 1st Annual Western Interstate Snow Survey Conference
Date PublishedFebruary 1933
PublisherUniversity of Nevada, Agricultural Experiment Station Bulletin
Conference LocationReno, Nevada
KeywordsSnow survey equipment, History of water forecasting

A biography of previous attempts at snow surveying for the purpose of forecasting the snow-melt runoff in Europe, Eastern United States and the Western States is related. The need for knowledge of the yearly varying quantity of water in the snow-pack which furnishes varying volumes of stream flow to lakes and reservoirs for irrigation and power development is paramount to semi-arid agriculture in the Western States, is presented. The staunch support of the Nevada Agricultural Experiment Station in starting the initial phase of this work by the Meteorologic Observatory on Mt. Rose, Nevada, at 10,800 feet elev., and including snow survey measurements of water content to correlate with streamflow and lake rise at Tahoe is described. The rapid growth and acceptance of forecast methods and the survey equipment developed at Mt. Rose from 1909 through 1933 is described. The formation of Water Forecast Committees in various river basins to coordinate snow survey forecasting and release of measurement data and advise local press releases of forecast volumes is described.