By Ms. Olivia Cottrell
The 2015-2016 winter was a bitterly disappointing season, according to many native Vermonters. Most people- from avid winter fans, to the people that hate the cold- were immensely disappointed in the winter and the effects it holds on the climate and economy today. Over the 2016 summer, Vermont was suffering from a drought. Compared to the average of around 39.9 inches of rain for northern Vermont, this summer hasn’t been good at all. Andy Nash, the meteorologist in charge at the National Weather Service in Burlington, says that in most places we would need up to eight inches of rain to get soil back to normal.
The hot and dry summer, combined with an upsetting past winter, will have many effects on Vermont. The Vermont Ski Areas Association reported 3.2 million ski visits, a 31 percent decline from 2015, when there were 4.7 million visits to ski resorts. This is definitely in part due to the dismal ski weather. Only 72 inches of snow fell at the top on Mount Mansfield, and an average of 29 inches statewide this past winter. For Mt. Mansfield, this is a remarkable decline; in 2015, 146 inches fell, making the 2015-2016 winter’s snowfall the lowest since the early 90’s, and one of the lowest in history. In 2007 a record amount of 327 inches of snow fell. While 2007 was an exception, Vermont is really struggling from the effects of a dismal winter.