If you snowshoe, ski or ride snow machines in the back country of Washington and Oregon, a NASA project could use your help.
NASA has launched a four-year project with researchers at the University of Washington, Oregon State University and the Alaska Division of Geological & Geophysical Surveys.
The goal is to gather data for a computer model that shows how much water snow contains.
Outdoor adventurers are asked to serve as citizen scientists, providing data. They can use their avalanche probes to take snow depth readings and then upload it to a free Mountain Hub app on their smart phone.
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“Traditionally, the types of models we run have relied on ‘point’ measurements, such as snow telemetry stations,” said David Hill of Oregon State University. “Citizen scientists who are traveling in back country snow environments can provide us with much more data than those stations provide.”
The information collected will be important to scientists, engineers, and managers of land and watersheds, according to Oregon State University.