The snow that fell on a mountainous ski resort in Russia last week had an unusual hue -- and made the getaway destination look like a scene from Mars.
The Rosa Khutor Resort in Sochi -- home to the 2014 Winter Olympics -- was covered in orange-tinted snow. The slopes, which looked more like desert dunes, made for some apocalyptic-looking photos, prompting people on social media to claim the photos had a sepia filter on them.
Meteorologists say the reason behind the orange phenomenon is dust that blew into the atmosphere from the Sahara and Arabian Deserts to the south. It then made its way toward Russia.
That dust in the atmosphere, mixed with the already forming snow, gave it the orange appearance, meteorologists added.
Meanwhile, yesterday at Mount Elbrus, more than 100 miles from Rosa Khutor, an avalanche of orange snow was cleaned up after it buried 15 cars in a nearby parking lot.
Another view of the snow avalanche on Mt Elbrus, Caucasus, SW Russia yesterday, March 24. Note the reddish hue of snow due to deposited Saharan dust. Report via partners @cycloneorhodes pic.twitter.com/WW4Ucvuf7g— severe-weather.EU (@severeweatherEU) March 25, 2018
Even with the discolored snow, Rosa Khutor’s slopes remained open and made for an unusual skiing experience.