April Mountain Memo E-Newsletter

Photo by Marilyn Rodman

Did you know the Crested Butte Land Trust has a monthly E-newsletter?

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New Crested Butte Land Trust Website

Our new website is live! We are still at www.cblandtrust.org but have a fresh look and encourage you to check out new pages that feature our projects, resources for landownersways to give, and more.

Thanks for giving the new site a browse! Please reach out if you have any questions about the work that you make possible.

Mt Emmons Open House, May 3

The U.S. Forest Service will be holding an open house on Wednesday, May 3 at the Lodge at Mountaineer Square, 620 Gothic Road, from 4 p.m. – 6 p.m.

Mark your calendars and join us to learn more about the historic land exchange and conservation easement project to protect Mt. Emmons forever.The Crested Butte Land Trust, in partnership with Mt. Emmons Mining Company, Town of Crested Butte and Gunnison County are at a significant point of agreement regarding the extinguishment of future mining and development on Mt. Emmons including protection for legal public access to Red Lady bowl. With support from High Country Conservation Advocates (HCCA) and Coal Creek Watershed Coalition (CWCC), the Crested Butte community is at the cusp of a historic victory to protect the land and water of the Gunnison Valley from a large mine in the upper Gunnison Basin.

The Land Trust is making a new video, and we want you to be part of it! This video will explore what Land Trust means to our community. Do you ride the Lower Loop, stroll through the aspens on the Lupine trails, picnic at Gunsight Bridge, or swim at Long Lake? Do you value caring for local wildlife, wetlands, and wonderful scenic views? Whatever your passion, you are an integral part of the Land Trust, and we want to hear from you!

The Importance of Snowpack

Warmer days are upon us, and the melt out has begun. After the snowy winter we’ve had, we are eager to see what our deep snowpack has in store for the upcoming spring and summer months. 

Snowpack, the total snow that accumulates over the winter, and snow water equivalent (SWE), the amount of water in the snow, serve as vital reservoir and water resources for people, ecosystems, and economies. Throughout the winter, the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) Cooperative Snow Survey Program collects data on the snowpack at various locations throughout the western United States, including one on Land Trust property out on the Lower Loop. This site helps water experts collect valuable snow data that is used to forecast water runoff and drought as well as implement strategic conservation and water management in the mountain west.

Spring temperatures and precipitation will play a key role in changes to our snowpack in the coming months, but as of today, the NRCS Butte Station is reporting the SWE is currently at 167% of normal in the Gunnison Basin. While we may have put a pause on our snow dances until next winter, continuing to collect and model data on snowpack depth and SWE is important because water released as snowmelt directly impacts soil moisture, streamflow, fisheries, vegetation, agriculture, tourism, municipal water supplies, and wildfires.

The Crested Butte Land Trust is grateful to all of the research and management efforts of our dedicated partners that help us create more resilient ecosystems through land and water conservation. Follow the links below to learn more about snowpack levels, water supply, and drought conditions.

RMBL Gunnison Basin Snow Persistence Forecasts

NRCS Snow Survey and Water Supply and links to interactive maps and reports

Land Trust Alliance on Changes in the Mountain Snowpack 

National Integrated Drought Information System

Colorado Public Lands Day Bash

Colorado Backcountry Hunters & Anglers is throwing a weekend festival on Colorado Public Lands Day, May 19 – 21. Don’t miss out on the fun at this year’s volunteer work weekend, Beers, Bands, and Barbed Wire Strands! Click here to sign up and enjoy local bands, great prizes, food, and camaraderie in boots-on-the-ground stewardship of your public lands. 

Thank you Colorado Backcountry Hunters and Anglers for putting on this impactful community event!

Partners in Conservation

Here, we highlight fellow organizations and businesses committed to preserving the lands that make our home so special.

Please enjoy the video below from Gunnison Trails.

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