OK fellow snowmobilers in the U.S., do you want a truly happy holiday? Check this out: There were blizzard warnings in 18 states yesterday, and more are on the way today. We’re not completely into this whole naming-of-winter-storms concept, but this Draco dude is much appreciated by snow lovers in many parts of the country.
So much so, in fact, that it is the topic of today’s Friday Fast Five. Yes, Eastern snowmobilers, it is headed your way, along with the cold weather that also is so desperately needed to freeze the lakes, swamps and ground. But here is a list of places that have already benefitted from pre-Christmas snowstorms.
- Gaylord, Michigan – Yesterday morning, grass was showing in Gaylord. About 24 hours later, it was a snowpocalypse. Snow totals were at 18 inches this morning, and the snow is still falling in this well-positioned town, located just south of the Mackinaw Bridge in Lower Michigan. We spoke with a reporter at the Gaylord Herald Times this morning who told us that snow started falling at about 7 a.m. yesterday, and it hasn’t stopped. The first 2 or 3 inches were slush, but then temperatures dropped and chaos ensued. She said the town is a mess and about 5,500 people are without power, but there was definitely excitement in her voice. You’ve got to love it when you find a fellow snow lover on the other end of the phone!
- Steamboat Springs, Colorado – OK, so there was some snow on the ground already in Colorado, but this has been a very good week for snowmobilers. How does 91 inches of fresh powder sound to you? The folks at Steamboat Snowmobile Tours said it was chest deep powder earlier this week, which in theory sounds fun but it can also be a ton of work with a lot of getting stuck. But the cold weather has allowed the snow to set up and riding conditions are getting close to ideal.
- Southern Wisconsin – When most folks think of snowmobiling in Wisconsin, their minds turn to the Northwoods region. But this week’s storm pummeled the southern parts of the state. The state’s capital city of Madison received 18.5 inches; an hour up the road in Beaver Dam, Wisconsin, the official total was 20.1 inches the last we heard. Well, we do have a caveat: Beaver Dam is far more than “an hour” away from Madison today, as strong winds that came with the heavy snow have brought havoc to the local roads and highways.
- Togwotee Pass, Wyoming – Down at the famous Togwotee Mountain Lodge outside of Jackson, Wyoming, they “only” received about 2 feet of fresh from a storm in the last week. Yeah, only. Go up roughly 1,000 feet to the pass, and you can almost double the snow amount. They’ve had cold, sunny weather the last couple of days, which has helped settle the snow and stabilize the base, keeping avalanche risks rather low. The fully settled base up at Brooks Lake Lodge (elevation: 9,200 feet) is at more than 40 inches, and more snow is in the forecast for all of next week.
- The Pacific Northwest – The Cascade Mountains have been buried in snow so far this season, making Washington and Oregon your snowfall Meccas this year. According to HMK founder Kirk Zack, it’s been fantastic. “It really has been deep – I was up on Sunday and it was great then with 2 – 3 feet of new on top of our base,” Zack told us, “and then we went back up on Tuesday afternoon and we have another 3 feet plus!” His enthusiasm is backed up by the photos in this story.