Old Man Winter to keep blowing | SteamboatToday.com

Old Man Winter to keep blowing

Snow, blowing snow advisory for area continues until midnight

Steamboat Springs — It appears February will pick up where December and January left off. — It appears February will pick up where December and January left off.

— It appears February will pick up where December and January left off.

The National Weather Service in Grand Junction has issued a snow and blowing snow advisory for Steamboat Springs, Hayden and Craig, effective from midnight Thursday until midnight today.

The advisory forecasts snowfall that is gradually increasing in intensity and coverage. Steamboat Springs could see between 4 and 8 inches of new snow by dawn Saturday, with Craig receiving between 3 and 6 inches, forecasters say.

Strong winds are expected to accompany the storm system, with westerly winds blowing between 20 and 30 mph. Stronger gusts are likely, according to the weather service.

Today’s high is expected to be 30 degrees.

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A snow and blowing snow advisory also was in effect Monday, when whiteout conditions forced the temporary closure of U.S. Highway 40 from the Utah border east to Rabbit Ears Pass. Hundreds of motorists were stranded between Steamboat and Craig until the high winds subsided and officials reopened the highway. Colorado Highway 131 from Steamboat south to Yampa also proved treacherous, with dozens more motorists forced to wait out the wind. No injuries were reported despite numerous cars and trucks sliding off roadways.

Today marks the first day of February, typically the third-snowiest month of winter at the Steamboat Ski Area. The ski area reported more than 100 inches of snow falling on the slopes of Mount Werner in December and January – just the third time in resort history that’s happened.

The ski area reports receiving 295 inches of snow since late fall. There have been only five 400-inch ski seasons in Steamboat Ski Area history: 1983-84, 1992-93, 1995-96, 1996-97 and 2005-06.

Local weather observer Art Judson reported 59.5 inches of snow falling in the city of Steamboat Springs this January. That total represents the 11th-highest January snowfall total since 1908.