Tahoe may show prehistoric weather | VailDaily.com

Tahoe may show prehistoric weather

Allen Best

LAKE TAHOE, Calif. ” A study of Lake Tahoe that could yield the most definitive timeline yet of climates in North America during the last two million years is underway.

Because the lake is so deep and so old, sediments provide a history of earthquakes, ash from volcanic eruptions and human activity such as logging and chemicals leaks from gas stations.

Cores of those sediments can also tell about weather cycles. Thin, sandy layers indicate dry years, and scientists have already found evidence of a 70-year drought.

“Lake Tahoe is a North American record,” Kenneth Verosub, professor of geology at the University of California at Davis, told the Tahoe Daily Tribune.

In this study, which may cost $2 million to $5 million, scientists also hope to arrive at the answer of “what is normal” for Lake Tahoe. By all accounts, clarity of the still deep-blue lake has diminished during the last 100 years as a result of human activity.

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But, scientists want to determine what the lake would look like if those activities are restrained or modified.

SILVERTON ” The Hardrock Hundred may be the craziest of all the mountain races. As the name implies, it covers 100 miles, but they are very, very difficult miles ” including crossing a 14,000-foot peak as well as the crest of several mountain ranges.

The winner this year is a familiar figure, Karl Meltzer, a bartender from the Salt Lake Valley. He has won three of the last four years. He finished the final six miles this year at a pace of 10 minutes 30 seconds per mile.

Keep in mind that he had been running for 28 hours at an average elevation of more than 11,000 feet.

It’s not just men punishing themselves. The lead female runner, Sue Johnston, was two hours back.

Fourth-place finisher Betty Nye didn’t compete last year because she was pregnant. But even this year, there was no rest for this weary competitor. During at least one aid station, reports the Silverton Standard, she paused to breast-feed her baby.

“This is how we’ve been so successful as a species,” the wife of one competitor as she waited for her “favorite lunatic” to stride into Silverton. “A whole bunch of people come together to support a lunatic idea.”

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