Rapid melt-off makes a mess in Grand County high country | SkyHiNews.com

Rapid melt-off makes a mess in Grand County high country

Janet Day / Talk of the Valley
Fraser Valley, Colorado

I’m Melting. This has been quite a melt-off ” faster than even the Wicked Witch of the West’s meltdown. Nearly four feet of snow in three days followed by some almost summer-like temperatures will do that.

The green stuff on the ground was unfamiliar until I remembered it was called grass and I had seen it many months ago. The green stuff appearing in some home basements and lower levels isn’t quite so nice ” just nasty runoff and groundwater seeping into homes and leaving some slime or mold behind.

As more trees die or are cut down, less water is absorbed. With this kind of rapid melt, every road, trail, path, drainage and low spot becomes a river atop saturated ground. What doesn’t flow into the creeks ends up in basements, ground levels and crawl spaces. Even people who put in or improved pumps last spring are already flooding this year.

Speaking of dead trees, has anyone else noticed how we don’t notice them any more? As evidence, consider this overheard conversation:

Fraser Valley Visitor: “It’s so sad about the trees.”

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Fraser Valley Local: “What about them?”

Visitor: “They’re all dead.”

Local: “Yep. Been that way for a while.”

No Longer in Training. Such a shame about the demise of the Winter Park Ski Train. I understand the economics of it and how the financial losses were too much even for a billionaire like Phil Anschutz, but the sale of the train takes with it an icon of Colorado’s ski history and heritage.

And while it brought plenty of skier and boarders to Winter Park Resort in the winter, it also brought a different demographic: non-skiers, non-hikers, non-outdoors people who otherwise probably would never visit a ski resort or a mountain town. Those are the people we will probably miss the most ” the ones who walk around a little, shop, eat, drink and then tell their friends about the great time they had at a ski resort without skiing.

Free Fun. There have been some new additions to the list of free mud season seminars for women being organized by Sybil Miller: New Zealand Fire Dancing, Bike Tune and Repair Clinic, High Country Gardening and more. For a full list of fun meetings and their dates, or to sign up, contact Miller at sybil@winterparktravel.com.

Attitude Adjustment. The Grand County Business and Economic Development Association continues to offer as much help as possible to struggling small businesses. Workshops in late April and May focus on how to stay positive in a negative economy. They include “Eight Great Ways to Improve your Marketing” on May 21 at the Fraser Town Hall and “Ten Survival Tips for a Tough Economy” on May 28 at the Winter Park Town Hall. For more information, contact the association at http://www.gcbeda.com.

I worry about how many more of our independent little Valley businesses will disappear if the economy doesn’t turn around soon. I hate to see Cascades Cabin closing, selling everything from their lovely clothing, kitchenware, books and children’s items to the display cases.

Still Open. If you’re thinking of watching the snow melt or wandering around vacant Winter Park Resort while no one’s there, you can still get something to eat and drink. Starbucks in the Zephyr Mountain Lodge complex remains open as does the Cheeky Monk, with a somewhat limited shoulder season menu.

” Keep in Touch. What’s got your attention around the Valley? Let me know and I’ll spread the news. Send an email to JDayQuilts@msn.com. And follow me on Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/DayJan or http://www.twitter.com/DayDreamCrafts

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