I've been doing a little periodical blog for a couple years now. It goes by the name of Desert Snow Junkies, is Southwest US oriented, and is sent out as an email to about 250 folks. It and can also be found on our Meetup.com group and facebook page going by the same name. Thought I'd share this particular edition since it's a bit controversial and might help to get your head out of this heat!
Since it’s now officially summer and most of us are already dealing with record temperatures, I thought it would be appropriate to talk about an age old “hot” topic! So just to shake things up a bit and help you forget about the heat for a bit, here’s something I hope gets you hot!
It’s said the snowboarding “saved the industry” back in the 1980s.
What was once called “the worst new sport” by Time Magazine did indeed reinvigorate the winter sports scene by drawing in a new generation. It inspired a new genre of “X” competitions, changed ski wear fashion, and inspired today’s shaped, fat skis.
Now that snowboarding has matured, the number of boarders has plateaued at slightly less than a third the total of on-slope participants. Board sales have declined for the last three seasons and it may now be time for skiing to return the favor. While board designers have traditionally concentrated mainly on the park and pipe crowd, the explosion of back country skiing has taken off with the advent of new and innovative gear. With more boarders now reaching middle age, designers are rethinking boards that are more on/off-piste friendly.
Trivia: “Ironically, the slopestyle riding that snowboarding spawned is one of its biggest challenges, as skiers take it to new heights, using superior speed and independent leg movement to launch higher out of the pipe and perform more complex tricks” (SKI Magazine 1/2012).
As far as our DSJ Trivia Research Dept. can come up with, the halfpipe record height is held either by Simon Dumont or Peter Olenick, both skiers.
Not trying to “dis” you boarders here, and please feel free to weigh in the subject…
Good News on the Horizon!!!???
Next winter could be wetter if El Nino returns. El Nino conditions, which can bring wetter winter weather to the southwestern United States, may develop this year as the Pacific Ocean warms, according to Australia's Bureau of Meteorology, citing data from weather models.
If the weather phenomenon develops, Arizona could see some relief from a drought that spread across the state after consecutive dry winters, including the one just past, which was one of the driest in more than a decade.
Although ocean and atmospheric indicators are currently neutral, some models may approach or exceed El Nino thresholds in the second half of the year, the Austrailian bureau said Tuesday. In March, the bureau said that a La Nina event had passed after peaking in January.
La Nina conditions typically steer storms north of Arizona during the winter months, when the state receives much of its yearly moisture in the form of snow. With La Nina in place the past two winters, snowfall was below average, as was runoff into rivers and reservoirs. Hydrologists say runoff this year will likely produce less than 40 percent of the water that usually flows into rivers.
Neither La Nina nor El Nino are sure indicators of weather conditions, according to the University of Arizona, but El Nino is twice as likely to produce a winter with wetter-than-average conditions. The effect is more pronounced across the southern part of the state.
For you cyclists or fans, there is a huge event coming up in Colorado this summer. The USA Pro Cycling Challenge kicks off Aug 20th with the opening leg from Durango to Telluride. Get up out of the heat and enjoy a beautiful weekend in the San Juan Mountains watching this great event! For a great place to stay, consider the beautiful Durango Mountain Resort high up in the aspens and away from the noise and crowds downtown.
Hope you’re all having a great summer!