Summit County - The high country is covered in a layer of dust after it blew in from Arizona. It was caused by a huge dust storm.

Experts say the layer of dust has created a very unstable situation in the snowpack and it might even have a long-lasting effect.

"It actually absorbs more heat than if it was nice and dry and white," snow specialist Dan Moroz with Lake Dillon Fire Rescue said. "If we just dig down, we can see the white snow covered by dust."

Weather experts say that after the massive dust storm in Arizona, the dust latched onto the jet stream and dumped in the mountains during the last round of snowfall.

"What we're getting is it's melting and it's getting slushy and it's getting wet," Moroz said. "It's a darker color so it absorbs more energy, it becomes wet and it has two different problems. One is it can cause wet-snow avalanches, but it can also help accelerate the melting of the snowpack."

With the snowpack melting faster and a heavy runoff with flooding, the high country would dry out faster and there would be increased wildfire danger during the summer..

"If the snowpack melts out quicker, that means the conditions are going to dry out faster," Moroz said. "If we don't have the summer monsoon weather that comes in to replenish all this water, we could be in for a really long, dry second half of the summer."

Moroz says the reoccurring phenomenon is becoming more frequent and even a new blizzard won't help.

"The problem will not go away," Moroz said. "It's here to stay for the year."

The avalanches that could occur from the dust could be the most dangerous of the season. Getting caught in a wet, heavy avalanche would certainly be deadly.