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Susan Frankenstein, Anne Sawyer, and Julie Koeberle

represent a significant portion of the major global snow cover environments ( Cline et al. 2001 ). Each MSA contains three 1-km 2 intensive study areas (ISAs), with a micrometeorological station located near the center of each MSA that measures snow depth and soil moisture and temperature profiles. We used four of the nine CLPX ISA sites to explore SNTHERM’s and FASST’s predictive abilities. The sites chosen were Illinois River (NI) in the North Park MSA, Buffalo Pass (RB) and Walton Creek (RW) in the

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Kelly Elder, Don Cline, Glen E. Liston, and Richard Armstrong

Michigan River, Illinois River, and Potter Creek ISAs. The Rabbit Ears MSA contained the Walton Creek, Spring Creek, and Buffalo Pass ISAs. Field measurements were divided into two main categories: transect and snow pit measurements. Transect data included snow depths and related measurements, as detailed below. Snow pits were excavated at fixed locations and related measurements were made, also detailed below. The field effort has produced an extensive legacy dataset that can be used to answer current

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Jeffrey S. Deems, Steven R. Fassnacht, and Kelly J. Elder

snow seasons a. Study areas Two sites from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration’s (NASA) Cold Land Processes Experiment (CLPX) in Colorado were used in this study: the Walton Creek and Alpine intensive study areas (ISAs; Cline et al. 2001 ; Figs. 1 and 2 ). The moderate-elevation Walton Creek site, in the Yampa River Basin, is characterized by a broad meadow environment interspersed with small, dense stands of coniferous forest; low rolling topography; and deep snowpacks. The high

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Kelly Elder, Angus Goodbody, Don Cline, Paul Houser, Glen E. Liston, Larry Mahrt, and Nick Rutter

parameters are listed in Table 1 . Data collection began in late September 2002 for the ISA towers and mid-November 2002 for the LSOS site. Measurements were made every 30 s and averaged over 10-min intervals for all parameters. except for soil moisture and snow depth measurements, which were recorded instantaneously at 10-min intervals. Continuous data were logged through the end of the 2003 water year, except for the Illinois River and Potter Creek towers, which were removed in July 2003 because of

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

moderate-to-deep snow covers that increase with elevation. The North Park MSA lies within the center of a broad high-elevation parkland, approximately 40 km in diameter. Compared with the Fraser MSA, North Park is relatively flat ( Fig. 3a ). It has minimum, maximum, and mean elevations of 2399, 2804, and 2502 m, respectively. Vegetation in the area is mostly sagebrush ( Artemisia tridentata var. vaseyana ) shrubland, with meadows in the wetter areas near rivers and streams ( Fig. 3b ). Relatively

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Don Cline, Simon Yueh, Bruce Chapman, Boba Stankov, Al Gasiewski, Dallas Masters, Kelly Elder, Richard Kelly, Thomas H. Painter, Steve Miller, Steve Katzberg, and Larry Mahrt

observed on 23 Feb 2002 over the North Park MSA: (a) 18.7 and (b) 37 GHz h-polarization brightness; (c) 18.7 and (d) 37 GHz h-polarization emissivity; and (e) estimated SWE. In (e), rivers are blue and primary roads are brown. Table 1. Airborne remote sensing datasets collected for CLPX. (Descriptions of the sensor and data handling methods and more detailed information on the actual data collected can be found online at http://nsidc.org/data/clpx ; see the metadata link associated with each dataset

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Robert E. Davis, Thomas H. Painter, Rick Forster, Don Cline, Richard Armstrong, Terry Haran, Kyle McDonald, and Kelly Elder

river basins. The coarse spatial resolution also leads to complex mixed pixels over much of the temperate latitudes, which presents some of the more difficult current challenges to algorithm developers ( Chang et al. 1996 ). Passive microwave sensing has also shown promise for assessing the freeze–thaw state of the land surface ( Zhang and Armstrong 2001 ; McDonald et al. 2004 ). The Air Force Space and Missile Systems Center runs the Defense Meteorological Satellite Program (DMSP). As part of the

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Glen E. Liston and Christopher A. Hiemstra

Colorado based on snowpack telemetry (SNOTEL) and the National Weather Service’s (NWS) cooperative (COOP) observations, and Andreadis and Lettenmaier (2006) used an ensemble Kalman filter to assimilate snow cover extent data as part of SWE simulations in the Snake River basin. Snow data assimilation programs also exist within U.S. operational centers, such as those performed by the Air Force Weather Agency (AFWA), and the National Weather Service’s National Operational Hydrologic Remote Sensing

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John Pomeroy, Chad Ellis, Aled Rowlands, Richard Essery, Janet Hardy, Tim Link, Danny Marks, and Jean Emmanuel Sicart

application of these computationally and parameter intensive small-scale models to large river basins or atmospheric model grid cells is not currently feasible; therefore, scaling relationships have been adopted that refer to the effects of the spatial variability of initial SWE and ablation energy on the snow-covered area during ablation. Buttle and McDonnell (1987) noted that the areal rate of depletion of snow cover can be influenced by the spatial variation in SWE or ablation rate, or some

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D. Marks, A. Winstral, G. Flerchinger, M. Reba, J. Pomeroy, T. Link, and K. Elder

hectares to several km 2 ( Link and Marks 1999b ; Marks et al. 1999 , 2001a , b , 2002 ) to regions and river basins of several thousand km 2 ( Marks et al. 1999 ; Garen and Marks 2005 ) and to develop an approach for integrating snow redistribution by wind into the model ( Winstral and Marks 2002 ; Marks et al. 2002 ). Once the initial snow cover and measurement height parameters are set, the thermal, mass, and wetness conditions of the snow cover are calculated. The thickness of the lower

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