December 31, 2009

Blizzard dampens Christmas spirit

Blizzard dampens Christmas spirit

You’re a mean one, Mr. Grinch. Or should one say Mother Nature.
The Grinch, in the persona of Mother Nature, dropped more than a foot of snow on the Garrison area. Strong winds in excess of 40 mph accompanied the snow, creating blizzard conditions across the majority of North Dakota.
The storm, which affected the whole upper Midwest, put a crimp in the Christmas spirit for numerous motorists. Streets and roads were virtually void of traffic during the height of the storm. About the only one making the rounds this Christmas was Santa himself.
There were few “ho, ho, ho’s” around Christmas trees this year. For those who celebrated Christmas Eve, families were, for the most part, able to get their activities in. But for those who planned to gather with family Christmas day, the blizzard was more like a lump of coal in the stocking.
Herb and Sharon Schwarz, Garrison’s official weather observers, said the snow carried a fair amount of moisture. The 12 inches held .63 in actual precipitation. Herb noted getting an accurate measure of snow during blizzard conditions is difficult.
“It’s tough to say how much with the snow blowing like that,” he said.
The storm stretched broad and wide; from Oklahoma into Canada and from North Dakota to Wisconsin. Interstates in both Dakotas were closed for a long period of time. U. S. Highway 83 was also shut down Christmas day and on into this past Saturday.
By Saturday morning, with the storm showing signs of weakening, antsy residents took to the driveways, shovels in hand and walking behind snow blowers, to clear a way to get out – anxious to be mobile again.
State road crews were dispatched en masse Saturday morning as the storm showed signs if lessening.

The Weather Network