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Aspen under winter storm warning

Janet Urquhart
The Aspen Times
Aspen, CO Colorado

ASPEN ” A winter storm warning is in effect for the mountains surrounding Aspen/Snowmass starting Sunday evening, and forecasters are calling for another 10 to 20 inches of new snow by late Monday.

The warning is in effect from 6 p.m. Sunday to 6 p.m. Monday for the Elk and Gore Mountains and the central mountain valleys of western Colorado, including Aspen, Snowmass and Vail, according to the National Weather Service.

While rain fell in the City of Aspen on Sunday morning, the precipitation fell as snow in the mountains on Saturday night. The Aspen Skiing Co. reported 6 inches of new snow at Snowmass and Aspen Highlands in its Sunday morning snow report. Aspen Mountain picked up 4 inches and Buttermilk received 3 inches.



Local mountains received the brunt of the snowfall from the first in a series of storms that swept into western Colorado late Saturday.

Crested Butte, to the south of Aspen, also picked up 6 inches over the past 24 hours, while Steamboat, in northwest Colorado, received 8 inches overnight. Loveland, on the Continental Divide, picked up 5 inches, and Vail and Beaver Creek both reported 3 inches




Sunlight Mountain Resort, outside of Glenwood Springs, reported no new snow on Sunday morning, as did the resorts in the southwest part of the state.

Sunday’s forecast for Aspen and Snowmass calls for an additional 1 to 3 inches of snow on Sunday morning, followed by a lull before widespread snowfall redevelops in the evening, with periods of heavy snow overnight and Monday, according to the weather service.

A really big dump could put Snowmass over the top for its third record-breaking month of snowfall this winter. The ski area had recorded 73 inches of snow in March going into the weekend. The record for the month is 101 inches, set in the winter of 1983-’84 (Skico records go back to 1980).

Snowmass needs 29 inches of new snow by the end of Monday, the last day of March, to surpass the mark. Snowfall in December and January also set records at Snowmass, where 384 inches had fallen since November going into the weekend.

Sunday evening’s storm is expected to bring snow, sleet and ice, and strong winds will hamper visibility for motorists, the weather service warned. The Colorado Department of Transportation reported no travel problems on Interstate 70 early on Sunday; check http://www.cotrip.org for updated statewide road conditions.