Science: Grandfather of the Snow

Dr. James Edward Church is a blue-eyed, twinkling man of 82 who looks like a rather hardy retired professor of Greek. That is just what he is, but he is better known as "the father of the snow survey" -the rough and rugged practical science of measuring the snowpack on high mountains.

In 1892 Dr. Church came to Reno to teach Latin and Greek at the University of Nevada. The classics were all right in their way, but the young professor felt the need of something more robust. One winter, on a dare, he set out to climb the 10,800-ft. peak of...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!