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11). 10. The seeder-feeder process. mountains. 11). In addition, as the air sinks, it warms and dries, causing the sublimation of snowflakes. Sublimation is similar to evaporation, except instead of water converting to water vapor, it is ice. Although this sounds weird, the process is similar to what happens when dry ice (frozen carbon dioxide) sublimates and “disappears” as it turns into gaseous carbon dioxide. Similarly, a snowflake can sublimate when it encounters a dry environment. These effects contribute to the climatological decrease in snowfall from the Cottonwood Canyons on the windward side of the Wasatch Mountains to the Wasatch Back on the leeward side.

Photo taken looking north along the Wasatch Back from Park City ski area. Terrain Shape and Orientation The shape and orientation of local terrain features strongly influence snowfall throughout the Wasatch Mountains. 2). As a result, the Cottonwoods observe the greatest diversity of storms in the Wasatch Mountains. In contrast, Mount Timpanogos is very high, but also narrow. 6), but its narrow profile does little to enhance precipitation when the flow is from the northwest. As a result, the annual snowfall on Mount Timpanogos and at Sundance ski area is lower than found at comparable elevations in the Cottonwood Canyons.

Average annual snowfall is near 350 inches at the top of Empire Mountain (9,570 feet), which is just a couple of miles to the lee of the Wasatch crest, but decreases dramatically as one moves further eastward and to lower elevations. 5). snow water equivalent (obtained from precipitation gauges) than snowfall, we began with a high-resolution analysis of average annual precipitation provided by the PRISM Climate Group at Oregon State University, which is considered to be the highest-quality precipitation analysis available in the United States.

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