DENVER, Oct. 26 (UPI) -- Colorado's largest glacier is vanishing and researchers at the University of Colorado believe that global warming may be playing a role.
The 62-acre Arapaho Glacier west of Boulder has dropped 100 to 130 feet since 1960, according to CU reports quoted Tuesday in the Rocky Mountain News. The nearby Arikaree Glacier has also sunk some 66 feet since 1965.
The reports are the first to document significant present-day declines in the state's Front Range glaciers, which are relatively small compared to other glaciers around the world.
Glaciologist Tad Pfeffer, of CU's Institute of Arctic and Alpine Research, said some of the Colorado glaciers could be gone in a couple of decades.
Pfeffer said the temperature is increasing and glacier volumes are shrinking globally. He said global warming may be involved in the decline of Colorado's glaciers.
Jim Benedict, a Boulder geologist and archaeologist, disagreed that global warning could be blamed for the decline of the Arapahoe glacier. He said it's too hard to interpret the effect of climate change on the Colorado glaciers.