Tour Divide: a divided tour this year

The conundrum facing the Tour Divide riders this year is quite interesting. As if the event didn’t already have enough drama, ma nature has forced some tough decisions. Snowpack is near record levels from Colorado to Banff.

There is a contingent starting in the south this year.  They are clearly in the minority (90 vs 15?) but that is likely to change.

I’ve put together a KML file that can be viewed in Google Earth.  The file contains the Tour Divide route and snowpack image overlays from Northern NM to Banff.  Got Google Earth?  Download the KML file here (right click ->save as) and check it out for yourself.  The snowpack graphics should refresh automatically on your computer so you have the latest.

The latest as of 5/26 is um, wintry. It looks white as soon as you leave Banff.

From TourDivide

The northern Montana looks a bit better, well sort of:

From TourDivide

Wyoming was the real shocker. That snow is DEEP. No wonder Dave Byers has been talking about snow so much…

From TourDivide

Colorado, not nearly so bad:

From TourDivide

Northern NM, a walk in the park. In terms of snow, anyway. I think they have a bit of drought right now.

From TourDivide

So there ya go. Now you can make a slightly more informed decision. I think JayP has nailed it – it’s a great year for an August start.

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