The Daily Globe - Serving Gogebic, Iron and Ontonagon Counties

Rain turns to snow on wicked Friday

 

October 28, 2017

Ralph Ansami/Daily Globe

HEAVY SNOW began accumulating along Silver Street in Hurley on Friday afternoon after the temperature dipped to 33 degrees.

By RALPH ANSAMI

ransami@yourdailyglobe.com

Ironwood - Pouring rain turned into heavy snow Friday evening and it quickly accumulated across the Gogebic Range.

When the thermometer hit the low 30s, the precipitation was pure white and it was the sticky variety of snow. Driven by strong north winds, the snow fell only about a week after autumn colors had peaked late throughout the area.

An Iron County Highway Department plow truck pushed the slush from the U.S. 51-Silver Street intersection in Hurley around 3 p.m., when the temperature stood at 33 degrees. Four inches of snow had already accumulated in Kimball, Wis., by that time.

The heavy snow snapped off tree branches and caused an hour and a half power outage in Saxon around noon on Friday.

Area law enforcement departments were responding to reports of fender benders and cars in the ditches as snow totals increased. They advised extreme caution.

The Gogebic County Sheriff's Department had received reports all day Friday of cars in the ditch and minor accidents, but no injuries. A deputy said the worst weather was to the east and he feared the roadways would turn to ice at night.

The National Weather Service predicted 6 to 9 inches of snow overnight for the Ironwood area, with more than a foot expected in high terrain from Ironwood to Bergland. As usual, the Lake Superior shoreline was expected to receive only light snow.

For the weekend, the snow was expected to continue through this morning and then return on Sunday afternoon.

The chance of snow today was 90 percent and it was listed at 40 percent for Sunday.

A winter storm warning was in effect until 1 p.m. today. North winds gusting to 40 mph were predicted near the Lake Superior shore.

A winter storm warning for snow means severe winter weather conditions are expected. People who must travel should keep an extra flashlight, food and water in the vehicle in case of an emergency.

U.S. 2 in Ashland was closed Friday morning to Wisconsin 13 as all traffic lanes were blocked. Strong north winds off Lake Superior washed over the highway and caused the closures.

There was a flood watch out for the Ironwood area along Lake Superior as the ditches ran deep with water from Friday morning's downpour.

Snow or rain is in the forecast for every day for the next week and there's not any sun in that period.

Snowfall on Oct. 27 is not unusual for Ironwood. The long-term average snowfall for the month through Oct. 27 is 5.3 inches. The record was 26.7 inches recorded in 1967, according to the National Weather Service office in Marquette.

 
 

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