Ryan Peck, 4, sleds down the hill in front of Moffat County High School with dogs Mori, left, and Maya in tow.

Photo by Hans Hallgren

Ryan Peck, 4, sleds down the hill in front of Moffat County High School with dogs Mori, left, and Maya in tow.

Craig bears brunt of winter storm Friday

Moffat County has an 11 percent chance to receive more snow today

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Today's forecast

Craig

• High temperature: 16 degrees

• Low temperature: -1 degree

• 12-hour probability for precipitation: 11 percent

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Josh Weaver, of Craig, clears a driveway on the corner of 10th and Ranney streets. Weaver said he clears snow during the winter for side-work.

Piles of snow greeted Craig residents Friday morning after a storm system blew through the region.

A winter storm warning was in effect in Craig, Hayden, Steamboat Springs and surrounding areas until 5 p.m. Friday, according to the National Weather Service's Web site.

Parts of Craig received five inches or more of snow by 4 p.m. Friday. Snow fell intermittently throughout the day but had ceased by around 5 p.m.

"This was actually a fairly strong storm system that was tracking along the Wyoming/Colorado border," said Bryon Lawrence, a NWS hydrologist based in Grand Junction.

Craig bore the lion's share of Friday's snowfall. Steamboat Springs had collected 2.3 inches by 1 p.m. Most recent NWS data reported 2.5 inches and 1 inch of snow fell in Dinosaur and Rangely, respectively, on Friday morning.

Still, the precipitation wasn't anything city of Craig Road and Bridge employees hadn't seen before.

"Usually, this is par for the course," said Randy Call, City Road and Bridge director.

The department sent out seven snowplow trucks and two motor graders to remove snow from city streets.

"We've had more snow," he said. "It just hasn't kept coming.

That's not to say Friday's storm couldn't rival its predecessors.

"It's likely to end up the biggest storm of the year for us," Call said.

The Moffat County Road and Bridge Department deployed 15 motor graders, three plow trucks and two pick-up trucks equipped with snowplows to roads across the county Friday, Director Bill Mack said.

Department workers had to free a few people from the snow after they had slid off slick county roads, he added.

Snow wasn't the main concern for Colorado Department of Transportation snowplow crews Friday.

"The storm hasn't been giving us as much grief as the wind has," said Kandace Lukow, CDOT Section Six maintenance superintendent.

The section includes Moffat, Routt, Grand, Jackson and Rio Blanco counties, as well as portions of Wyoming and Utah.

Wind caused drifting snow and low visibility, Lukow added.

The department put seven snowplows on U.S. Highway 40 between Craig and Steamboat Friday, with an additional snowplow covering routes in Craig.

Snowfall also affected local air travel.

Yampa Valley Regional Airport in Hayden was open Friday, but poor visibility caused by the storm was "playing havoc" on incoming flights, Assistant Airport Manager Dean Smith said.

As of about 4:30 p.m. Friday, no flights had been canceled, but some had been delayed.

A representative from the Craig/Moffat County Airport was contacted for this story, but declined to comment on the record about the flights that had been delayed or canceled at the airport.

The NWS forecasted the storm would play itself out by Friday evening, with a predicted 1.4 inches falling Friday night, according to the agency's Web site.

Still, according to weather forecasts on the agency's Web site, there's 11 percent chance that Craig could receive more snowfall by 5 p.m. Saturday.

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