Yes. This is due to a phenomenon known as the Rain Shadow Effect. One side of the mountain (usually the west facing side or the side closest to an ocean) is called the windward side. As clouds pass over it, they are more likely to release their precipitation as they approach the peak of the mountain. So by the time the clouds pass to the other side, known as the leeward side, there is no more rain left to fall. This causes dry, desert like conditions on the other side of the mountain.
Yes. The reason this happens is because the mountain forces warm moist to rise above it (because it obviously can’t go through it) as it rises over the mountain the air cools and forms clouds, at this stage it will either end up with rain, or fog if the there isn’t enough moisture. So in this case, the grass really can be greener on the other side.
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