Mount Chipotle A Dream for Gamblers?

A group of students at the University of Virginia have set up a betting pool — and possibly a quite profitable one — taking wagers on the huge over-50-foot mountain of snow that plows have created at Charlottesville’s popular Barracks Road Shopping Center.

It’s called Mount Chipotle.

UVA Environmental Sciences student Luke Cole told a local TV station WVIR “We have had aerial fly-overs actually with a small plane. We are trying to map the height and the perimeter of it. It certainly looks like a big north east snow pile that’s made its way down to the mid Atlantic.”

Cole’s department started a betting pool, challenging participants to predict when the mountain will melt — and a source at a local housing rental company says the pool has spread to many downtown businesses: “It’s just a matter of naming the day and putting in ten dollars or more. My money is on early May, but who knows? The thing is just huge. It even has a flag on top of it.”

“Some basic computer models may have been done to try and predict that date. But mostly it’s an educated guess,” according to Cole, who adds that proceeds from the pool will benefit his department.

You can find out more about the mountain, the pool, and even computer models of when the mass will become liquid at

Is the pool legal? Probably not, but law enforcement generally winks at the laws unless someone unpopular breaks them. If controversial recycling magnate Van der Linde was running the pool to pay his legal fees, their response might be different.

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