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Glen E. Liston, Christopher A. Hiemstra, Kelly Elder, and Donald W. Cline

, magnitude, and spatial variability ( Luce et al. 1998 ). In the Rocky Mountains, snow cover and depth patterns influence growing season length and plant distributions ( Billings 1973 ; Fagre et al. 2003 ). Snow distributions affect atmospheric chemical inputs ( Williams et al. 2002 ), ensuing meltwater distribution ( Billings and Bliss 1959 ), mineral weathering ( Benedict 1993 ), soil properties and development ( Seastedt 2001 ), and decomposition and mineralization ( Brooks et al. 1999 ). And finally

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Rafał Wójcik, Konstantinos Andreadis, Marco Tedesco, Eric Wood, Tara Troy, and Dennis Lettenmeier

updated daily using (in operations) a direct insertion approach. The observations are the Air Force Weather Agency (AFWA) global snow depth analysis (SNODEP), which is based on the interpolation of daily station reports (K. Mitchell 2007, personal communication). The approach we propose to develop in this paper is a part of a broader National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration–National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NOAA–NASA) Joint Center for Satellite Data Assimilation (JCSDA) sponsored

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