On the Hill: ‘Here we go’
After an early October snowstorm that lifted skiers’ hearts, the last few weeks were on the warm and dry side. But the National Weather Service announced a snow advisory for the Colorado mountains this weekend, predicting 4 to 8 inches of snow above 9,000 feet.Joe Ramey, a forecaster at the National Weather Service in Grand Junction, said the storm system from the Pacific is combining with a cold front that was over Utah on Friday to produce the snow.”It’ll be a one-two punch,” Ramey said. “This first storm will clear late Saturday, but into Sunday and Sunday night, a stronger surge of unstable air is coming in.”That could produce another 6 inches of snow, he said.The storm changes several weeks of mostly dry, sunny weather. While totals for the month aren’t in yet, Ramey said it appeared that many days in October have been 5 to 8 degrees warmer than average. That’s made things a bit of challenge for ski areas trying to make snow. But Copper Mountain – which plans to be the third Colorado report to open for the season Friday – is on track, according to spokeswoman Lauren Pelletreau.”We’ve had the snowmaking guns on every night, but turning them off during the day as it’s gotten warmer and it’s not snow anymore,” she said. “But any help we can get from Mother Nature is great.”Unlike the month’s earlier, very wet storm, this one should put down more wintry powder, Ramey said.”Here we go,” he said. “We’re putting up snow now that’ll be up there until next summer.”
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Three longtime residents of the lower Roaring Fork Valley talk about the sinking feeling that built Monday and Tuesday as the Grizzly Creek Fire grew. They are hoping the threat to their neighborhoods has passed.