First snow takes motorists by surprise |

First snow takes motorists by surprise

by Stephanie Miller
Sky-Hi Daily News
Byron Hetzler/Sky Hi Daily News
ALL | Sky Hi Daily News

Bob Florquist, communications supervisor for the Grand County Sheriff’s office, was born and raised in Fraser.

And every year, it’s the same story, he said. The first early-season snowstorm hits, and the roads are littered with roll-overs and slide-offs.

“They’re just not ready for it,” Florquist said, and sighed. “I’m kinda used to it . . . People just don’t slow down.”

Dispatch received more than a dozen calls yesterday morning; cars were found stuck or upside down in Granby, along Highway I-25, U.S. Highway 40 west of Kremmling and Highway 34 in Grand Lake. There were also multiple cars stuck or sliding-off Meadow Ridge Hill in Fraser (CR 804), Florquist added. State Patrol stated at 2 p.m. it was still responding to accidents.

Wednesday night’s snowfall wasn’t substantial, but roads were icy Thursday morning before the sun burned through the dense cloud cover, catching drivers off guard. By mid-afternoon, the roads were mostly clear.

Most of Grand County received close to a couple inches Wednesday night ” the most snow fell 11 miles northwest of Kremmling, with 4.5 inches. Tabernash received 2.1 inches; Granby 1.6 inches; and Grand Lake 2.5 inches. Fraser and Winter Park received roughly 2 to 3 inches of snow, including Winter Park Resort. (Some measurements conducted by CoCoRaHS: Community Collaborative Rain/Hail/and Snow Network.)

Winter Park Communications Coordinator Jenn deBerge said ski patrol gave an “unofficial” report yesterday morning: 14 inches of snow at mid-mountain (the resort starts its official measurements on Nov. 1). The new snow has helped the resort’s snowmaking operations, she said.

“This early snowfall is excellent!” deBerge said. “Not only does it get everyone excited for our opening day, but it also enhances our snowmaking by keeping the ground cold and by mixing itself in as we make the manmade snow, making it fluffier.”

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