Noah Molotch

  • Noah Molotch
    University of Colorado Boulder

    Noah Molotch

    Principal Investigator

    My research and teaching interests are focused on mountain hydrology and fostering a diverse and equitable scientific community. My research projects utilize ground-based observations, remote sensing, and computational modeling to obtain comprehensive understanding of hydrological processes; in particular the distribution of snowmelt, soil moisture and streamflow.  Studies relating fluxes of water and carbon are also a focus of my current projects - in particular carbon cycling in montane forests.  I mentor a diverse group of scientists and seek collaborations with individuals with unique perspectives and life experiences.


  • Knowles, John F., Nels R. Bjarke, Andrew M. Badger, Max Berkelhammer, Joel A. Biederman, Peter D. Blanken, Mario Bretfeld, et al. 2023. “Bark Beetle Impacts on Forest Evapotranspiration and Its Partitioning.” Science of The Total Environment 880 (July): 163260.

  • Hale, Katherine E., Keith S. Jennings, Keith N. Musselman, Ben Livneh, and Noah P. Molotch. 2023. “Recent Decreases in Snow Water Storage in Western North America.” Communications Earth & Environment 4 (1): 170.

  • Yang, Kehan, Keith N. Musselman, Karl Rittger, Steven A. Margulis, Thomas H. Painter, and Noah P. Molotch. 2022. “Combining Ground-Based and Remotely Sensed Snow Data in a Linear Regression Model for Real-Time Estimation of Snow Water Equivalent.” Advances in Water Resources 160 (February): 104075.
  • Hale, K.E., A.N. Wlostowski, A.M. Badger, K.N. Musselman, B. Livneh, and N.P. Molotch. 2022. “Modeling Streamflow Sensitivity to Climate Warming and Surface Water Inputs in a Montane Catchment.” Journal of Hydrology: Regional Studies 39 (February): 100976.

  • Musselman, Keith N., Nans Addor, Julie A. Vano, and Noah P. Molotch (2021). Winter Melt Trends Portend Widespread Declines in Snow Water Resources. Nature Climate Change 11 (5): 418–24.

  • Barnhart, Theodore B., Jelena Vukomanovic, Patrick Bourgeron, and Noah P. Molotch. 2021. “Future Land Cover and Climate May Drive Decreases in Snow Wind‐scour and Transpiration, Increasing Streamflow at a Colorado, USA Headwater Catchment.” Hydrological Processes 35 (11).

  • Bjarke, N.R., B. Livneh, S. Elmendorf, N. Molotch, E. Hinckley, J. Morse, N. Emery, P. Johnson, and K. Suding, 2021: Catchment scale observations at the Niwot Ridge Long-Term Ecological Research site, Hydrological Processes.

  • Badger, *A.M., N.R. Bjarke, N. Molotch, and B. Livneh, 2021: The sensitivity of runoff generation to spatial snowpack uniformity in an alpine watershed: Green Lakes Valley, Niwot Ridge Long Term Ecological Research Station, Hydrological Processes, e14331.

  • Heldmyer, A.J., B. Livneh, B. Rajagopalan, and N. Molotch, 2021: Investigating the Relationship Between Peak Snow-Water Equivalent and Snow Timing Indices in the Western U.S. and Alaska, Water Resources Research, 57, e2020WR029395.

  • Schneider, Dominik, Noah P. Molotch, Jeffrey S. Deems, and Thomas H. Painter (2021). Analysis of Topographic Controls on Depletion Curves Derived from Airborne Lidar Snow Depth Data. Hydrology Research52 (1): 253–65.

  • Pan, Jinmei, M. T. Durand, Z. Courville, B. J. Vander Jagt, N. P. Molotch, S. A. Margulis, E. J. Kim, M. Schneebeli, and C. Mätzler (2021). Evaluation of Stereology for Snow Microstructure Measurement and Microwave Emission Modeling: A Case Study.International Journal of Digital Earth, March, 1–21.

  • Jennings, K.S., T. Winchell, B. Livneh, and N.P. Molotch (2018). Spatial variation of the rain-snow temperature threshold across the Northern Hemisphere. Nature Communications, 9(1), 1148.   doi: 10.1038/s41467-018-03629-7

  • Hallar, A.G., N.P. Molotch, J. Hand, B. Livneh, I.B. McCubbin, R. Petersen, J. Michalsky, and D. Lowenthal (2017). Impacts of Increasing Aridity and Wildfires on Aerosol Loading in the Intermountain Western U.S., Environmental Research Letters, 12(1), 014006,   doi: 10.1088/1748-9326/aa510a

  • Baker, E., T. H. Painter, D. Schneider, A. Meddens, J. A. Hicke, and N. P. Molotch (2017). Quantifying insect-related forest mortality with the remote sensing of snow. Remote Sensing of Environment, 188: 26-36   doi: 10.1016/j.rse.2016.11.001 - 9905

  • Schneider, D., and N. P. Molotch (2016). Real-time estimation of snow water equivalent in the Upper Colorado River Basin using MODIS-based SWE reconstructions and SNOTEL data. Water Resources Research, 52(10): 7892-7910   doi: 10.1002/2016WR019067 - 9916

  • Barnhart, T., N. P. Molotch, B. Livneh, A. Harpold, J. Knowles, and D. Schneider (2016). Snowmelt rate dictates streamflow. Geophysical Research Letters, 43(15): 8006-8016   doi: 10.1002/2016GL069690

  • Livneh, B., J.S. Deems, B. Buma, J.J. Barsugli, D. Schneider, N.P. Molotch, K. Wolter, and C.A. Wessman (2015). Catchment response to bark beetle outbreak and dust-on-snow in the Colorado Rocky Mountains. Journal of Hydrology, 523, 196-210   doi: 10.1016/j.jhydrol.2015.01.039

  • Ralph, F. M., M. Dettinger, A. White, D. Reynolds, D. Cayan, T. Schneider, R. Cifelli, K. Redmond, M. Anderson, F. Gherke, J. Jones, K. Mahoney, S. Gutman, V. Chandresekar, J. Lundquist, N. P. Molotch, L. Brekke, R. Pulwarty, J. Horel, L. Schick, A. Edman, P. Mote, J. Abatzoglou, R. Pierce, and G. Wick (2014). A vision for future observations for Western U.S. extreme precipitation and flooding. Journal of Contemporary Water Research & Education, 153(1): 16-32,   doi: 10.1111/j.1936-704X.2014.03176.x - 9915
  • Perrot, D., N. P. Molotch, K. Musselman, and E. Pugh (2014). Modelling the effects of the mountain pine beetle on snowmelt in a subalpine forest. Ecohydrology, 7(2): 226-241,   doi: 10.1002/eco.1329 - 6724

  • Livneh, B., J. S. Deems, D. Schneider, J. J. Barsugli, and N. P. Molotch (2014). Filling in the gaps: Inferring spatially distributed precipitation from gauge observations over complex terrain. Water Resources Research, 50 (11) 8589-8610   doi: 10.1002/2014WR015442

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