The Smuggler Mountain Station was installed in 2012 and began collecting data in the summer of 2013. Located at an elevation of around 9,030 feet, the station is located in a mixed conifer forest that includes spruce, pine, fir, and some aspen. This station is powered by solar panel and measures air temperature, relative humidity, soil moisture at 2, 8, and 20 inch depths. In the fall of 2014, soil temperature at 8 inches was added as well.

Soil at a Glance:

Soil results are from 2021
Sandy loam | 5.9% organic matter | 1.0 ppm NO3 | 28.4 ppm P | pH 5.0


Air Temperature | Relative Humidity | Rain | Soil Moisture at 2, 8, and 20in (5, 20, and 51cm) | Soil Temperature at 8in (20cm) added 2014

How rapidly and how easily soil moisture travels through the soil is heavily influenced by soil type and composition. At the Smuggler Mountain site, the soil is loose and has a low organic matter content. Unlike other stations, where moisture at 8 and 20 inch depths tends to lag behind moisture spikes at the 2 inch depth, water seems to percolate into the soil quickly at Smuggler Mountain.

Live data are collected every 20 minutes and transmitted every four hours. These data have not been checked for anomalies or potential false readings and soil moisture readings are not calibrated. Rain readings should not be considered accurate when temperatures are below freezing. 

Archived data offer daily averages or daily maximum and minimum readings for each sensor. These data have been calibrated and undergone basic QC. However, rain readings should not be considered accurate when temperatures are below freezing.


This station was jointly funded by: Pitkin County Open Space and Trails, City of Aspen, and the Aspen Center for Environmental Studies. It was installed and is operated by AGCI.