Snow blasts Eagle County |

Snow blasts Eagle County

Christine Ina Casillas

As cold temperatures dropped and snow continued to fall Saturday, the mountains remained a haven for skiers and snowboarders, who found the some of the deepest powder of the season on local slopes.

But tourists and other travelers might have found it hard to get in and out of the Vail Valley after Vail Pass closed in both directions because of avalanche control. Powderhounds from Leadville, meanwhile, also had trouble traveling. U.S. Highway 24 was closed at Tennessee Pass because of another avalanche.

Hundreds of avalanches have been reported during the onslaught of snowstorms, said Joe Ramey, a forecaster for the National Weather Service in Grand Junction.

More than an inch per hour of snow fell on the valley Friday night through Saturday afternoon, he said.

More than a foot of snow fell in Vail Friday night with more snow expected through the afternoon today, Ramey said. Beaver Creek reported more than 17 inches of new snow Saturday with more in the forecast.

“It should be a great powder day (Sunday),” Ramey said. “But it’s terrible out right now. The roads are a nightmare.”

A storm still brewing out to the west will continue to produce snow until the afternoon, Ramey said. A low pressure system was expected to pass through the valley from the southwest to the northeast Saturday night. Gusty winds will start to diminish throughout the day today, he said.

“If the flow turns around, we’ll be doing really well,” he said.

Three feet of snow was reported in the San Juan Mountains in southern Colorado, Ramey said.

Christine Ina Casillas can be reached at 949-0555, ext. 607 or at

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