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The (nearly) daily Tribune update Wednesday, March 22

Warm wet weather creates extreme avalanche danger in the Sangre de Cristos

It is not all that normal for there to be rain during the month of March here in the Wet Mountain Valley, but as the old saying goes in Colorado, if you do not like the weather, just wait five minutes. However, it might be prudent to delay this week’s hiking trip into the Sangre de Cristo Mountains because this warm storm system is locked on the mountains and is predicted to dump several feet of heavy wet snow. This wet snow will fall on top of lighter early winter snowpack plus high winds will make it easy to trigger avalanches above and below the treeline. Naturally occurring avalanches are expected to take place this coming weekend. For more information, you can visit the very interesting Colorado Avalanche Information Center.

Snowpack starts to catch up with the rest of the state

The plus side of the dreary weather is that the snowpack in the Sangre de Cristos has started to catch up with the rest of the state. As can be seen from the chart below, the snowpack at South Colony is finally over 100% with a nice 106% of median. Colorado has seen a near-record amount of snow this past winter, but the Wet Mountain Valley fell behind the other areas as the storms failed to dump valuable moisture in this region. The next several weeks are expected to stay wet as an atmospheric river has formed and will continue to bring storms to the region. For more information on snowpack in the American West, click on this link. Warning, the SNOWTEL website is extremely entertaining.

A hot bowl of Ramen at Beeza’s Restaurant & Pub makes bad weather better

Yes, this is an advertisement, but we are sure that nothing makes these damp spring days better than a hot bowl of ramen at Beeza’s Restaurant & Pub in downtown Westcliffe. Now open Wednesday through Saturday from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. The menu at Beeza’s is excellent and will please any group. From gourmet burgers, steaks, hot curry, and of course piping hot ramen, Beeza’s is the perfect gathering place (this author loves the Guinness on Nitro or a perfect Black and Tan).

Pork Belly Ramen from Beeza’s is oh so good!

Forecast for the next few days

There is really only one place to get accurate weather information, and that is directly from the source compiled by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). The Tribune highly recommends visiting the website by clicking here.

Understanding opioid overdose and how to respond

While Custer County has been spared from the worst effects of the ongoing fentanyl epidemic in the United States, the Valley has not been spared from the opioid addiction crisis. In the late 1990s and 2000s, several large pharmaceutical companies worked successfully to over-prescribe opioid drugs such as Perdue Pharma’s Oxycodone. Addiction to pain medications is still a problem in Colorado and the Wet Mountain Valley. Custer County Public Health Department is offering a free workshop on Tuesday, March 28 from 5 to 6 p.m. that will cover opioid overdoses and what to do about it. See the flyer below for more information.

With lumber prices at historic lows now is the time to build

The cost of most construction materials remains stubbornly high after the record building boom across the nation over the past few years. However, few realize the cost of lumber has dropped dramatically in the past six months to lows not seen since 2012, the bottom of the Great Recession. So if you have been planning on building a pole barn, garage, horse barn, barndominion, simple houses, or just general construction, get a hold of Stutzman Buildings for an affordable building you are sure to love.

Thats all for today, The Tribune hits newsstands tomorrow (Every Thursday) so pick up a copy and don’t miss out on everything that is going on in Custer County! Subscribe now for a year, just $38 in county and $49 out of county. It takes less than one minute, no account needed!

– Jordan Hedberg

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