After wearing T-shirts for the past two weeks, Pine River Valley residents received a second winter storm in a month that was strong enough to close schools and some businesses.
Schools were closed Monday in the Ignacio and Bayfield school districts, county offices opened at 10 a.m., the Ignacio Community Library did not open, and other businesses said they are planning to close early today.
Fortunately, the snow doesn't seem to be having much impact on power lines. LPEA reported eight small outages on Monday morning affecting about 80 customers. Crews were in the field fixing the problems, said spokeswoman Indiana Reed.
By Monday afternoon, crews are attending to nine individual outages impacting 138 customers.
The largest outages at this time are 56 customers out of power at 590 CR 505 in La Plata County and 53 customers out of power at 75 Oldhams Place in Archuleta County.
As the temperature warms into the afternoon, and the moisture content in the snow increases, the chance for outages grows. Snow accumulated on power lines and trees will begin to unload, potentially causing momentary "blinks" as the system analyzes and resets. Also, as the weight of the snow increases, branches and trees may be brought down, impacting lines.In the event of an outage, LPEA members are encouraged to call 247-5786. More information will be disseminated as it becomes available.
The snow started on Saturday night and continued to fall intermittently Monday afternoon.
Here is the Monday morning forecast from the Grand Junction office of the National Weather Service: 70% chance of snow tonight, down to 50% tomorrow, then partly cloudy on Tuesday night. Sunny and 37 on Wednesday. High of 31 today and low of 23 tonight. It's supposed to warm up to 37 tomorrow. There's another chance of snow returning on Thursday and Friday.
Snow measured 16 inches or more in downtown Bayfield, while upwards of two feet were reported in Beaver Meadows and Forest Lakes north of Bayfield, and 18 inches between Bayfield and Ignacio.
Have fun shoveling and plowing everyone!