Steamboat snow levels above average
Winter storm warning, more storm systems on the way
By the numbers
Steamboat Ski Area reported 368.5 inches by Tuesday morning.
Year, inches of snow, rank
2007-08 , 489, 1
05-06, 432, 4
1999-01, 369, 5
96-97, 447.75, 2
95-96, 441.25, 3
Steamboat Springs — Steamboat Springs Police Department officers lost track of the number of accidents they responded to Tuesday when they reached 15, Officer Doug Sherar said.
Although there were accidents reported across the area, police said there were no significant injuries in the fender-benders.
The late-March storms are causing havoc on local roads but bringing smiles to Steamboat Ski Area, which, as of this morning, has topped 370 inches for the season. The storms show no signs of abating, as the National Weather Service included Steamboat Springs in a weather advisory until at least this evening, with storms likely to resume Friday.
The winter storm warning states that heavy snowfall is expected in periods today, bringing eight to 16 inches before the storm is finished.
“You guys are just winning the snow game hands down. Wow, it’s incredible,” said National Weather Service forecaster Joe Ramey, from Grand Junction.
Steamboat Ski Area is in the running for its fifth-highest snow amount in the past 15 years with 368.5 inches reported Tuesday morning, half an inch shy of the total amount recorded in 1999.
The amount is still far less than last year’s record 489 inches, but Ramey said the snow will keep falling as several storms approach.
“It looks like another good one as far as good amounts,” he said about incoming weather. “You’ll get a little break on Thursday, but by Friday, the next Pacific storm starts to work across the Great Basin and approach Colorado.”
Ramey said Steamboat is above average this year, with Rabbit Ears Pass at 110 percent of average snowfall and the Yampa and White River Basin at 106 percent of average.
Steamboat also is ahead of other ski areas across the state; 33 inches fell at its peak during Sunday and Monday.
“We looked at snow totals from the ski areas that are still open, and everybody reported zero to three inches in the last 24 hours,” he said. Steamboat had 16 inches during that time Monday.
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As the snow melting off the peaks surrounding Steamboat Springs feeds the Yampa River, rafters, canoeists, kayakers and paddle boarders are trying to make the most of it.