Image of the Week - Olympic Skiing in Beijing
A satellite image of the mountains that will host Olympic skiing events should display a snowy landscape, right? But the National Alpine Ski Centre and Sliding Centre 45 miles northwest of Beijing, China doesn't get much snowfall. Instead, the steep slopes are lined with manmade snow. Water used in snowmaking is pumped from reservoirs which makes it possible to reuse snowmelt and rainwater.
Landsat 8 imagery acquired in the years before the venue's opening shows a forested mountain range. In February 2022, Landsat shows the artificially snow-covered ski runs ready for competition. In summer the ski runs carved out of the mountainside stand out against a green forested landscape.