DENVER (AP) — Denver’s airport was closed for a second day Monday after a powerful late winter snowstorm dumped over 3 feet of snow on parts of Colorado and Wyoming, shutting down roads, canceling school and closing state legislatures in both states.
The 27 inches (68 centimeters) that had fallen by the end of Sunday at Denver International Airport on the plains east of downtown made it the fourth biggest snowfall in the city’s history, according to the National Weather Service in Denver.
The runways were closed just before noon on Sunday due to blowing snow and poor visibilities and some stranded passengers spent the night at the airport. With the sun shining on Monday, over 200 plows were working to clear the snow and ice but the runways were not scheduled to reopen until 2 p.m. Mountain Daylight Time, the airport said.
At the Colorado Springs Airport, several flights were either canceled or delayed Monday. Click or tap here for flight status updates in Colorado Springs.
In Wyoming, the National Weather Service called the storm “historic and crippling’ and warned that driving would remain dangerous for the next several days there because of slick and snow covered roads.
Some trucks and other travelers were stranded in eastern Wyoming where several major roads remained closed Monday, including routes in and out of the cities of Cheyenne and Casper. Interstate 70 across much of the eastern half of Colorado was also closed.
Classes were canceled Monday at schools around the Denver area and in Cheyenne and Casper. Classes were also called off at Colorado State University in Fort Collins and the University of Colorado’s main campus in Boulder. State government offices in the Denver area and southeastern Wyoming were also closed.
The U.S. Postal Service said many post offices would be closed in Colorado on Monday and mail delivery in many locations would be severely curtailed or suspended.
In the Denver metro area, all bus routes and light rail lines were suspended for snow removal with the exception of a line running from downtown’s Union Station to the airport, which ran on a reduced schedule.
The Colorado Avalanche Information Center warned of “dangerous” avalanche conditions in many areas of the state, including the mountains along the Front Range. It urged backcountry users to avoid areas of new snowfall prone to wind drifts that could help trigger large snowslides on what has been a particularly unstable snowpack this season. Colorado has reported 11 avalanche deaths this winter.
The Gazette contributed to this report.