Winter storm hits Colorado, delivers in Aspen
The Aspen Times
Aspen, CO Colorado
ASPEN – Snowmass was boasting 7 inches of new snow from a winter storm that plowed into Colorado Monday night and bumped up avalanche danger in the Aspen area.
Aspen Highlands was reporting 5 inches by mid-morning Tuesday, while Aspen Mountain and Buttermilk had 4 inches. In the midvalley, an inch or two of heavy, wet snow fell overnight.
The Colorado Avalanche Information Center rated avalanche risk in its Aspen zone as high on Tuesday, and predicted the danger would increase as snow accumulations added up. The danger is high on northwest-, north-, northeast- and east-facing slopes above treeline and considerable elsewhere, the CAIC said.
The bloggers at aspenweather.net are still predicting up to a foot of new snow on local ski slopes before a winter storm warning for the area expires at midnight. Another foot could fall between Wednesday night and Friday morning, according to their forecast.
On the roads, accidents shut down a snowy stretch of eastbound Interstate 70 in Glenwood Canyon for about an hour and westbound I-70 was closed in the Eagle area. A chain law was in effect for several hours Tuesday morning in Snowmass Village.
In southwest Colorado, Highway 550 over both Molas Divide and Red Mountain Pass was also closed.
An avalanche warning is in effect in the northern and southern San Juan Mountains of southwestern Colorado, where the storm was expected to pack its biggest wallop.
Ski areas there reflected the bounty in their morning reports. Purgatory at Durango had 18 inches of new snow by early Tuesday, while Silverton Mountain picked up 17 inches.
Elsewhere, Sunlight Mountain Resort outside of Glenwood Springs reported 8 inches, as did Telluride. Powderhorn picked up 7 inches, but Vail, Steamboat and Winter Park were among the resorts reporting no new snow early Tuesday.
The storm also brought some light snow to the Front Range.
As Pitkin County Open Space and Trails moves closer to approval for the development of a 7-mile trail from Redstone to McClure Pass, some Crystal Valley residents cry foul over wildlife impacts and potential for further development.