Winter storm brings another blast of snow

Associated Press
Kevin Poitevin walks back to his apartment on Friday along East 30th Street in Farmington.

ALBUQUERQUE — Another blast of snow and cold temperatures is moving across New Mexico days after some parts of the state are still digging out from the last winter storm.

The National Weather Service on Friday issued numerous winter storm warnings and advisories for much of the state. Forecasters say this is the third and coldest system to hit the state this week.

More snow is possible for the northeast corner overnight as the storm exits into the Texas Panhandle.

Some roads were slushy and icy in southern New Mexico on Friday, and crews were out plowing and spreading salt and cinder. State transportation officials were urging drivers to slow down.

Schools canceled classes and courthouses were closed across northwestern and north-central New Mexico.

Demetrius Sandoval prepares a snowball to throw at his sister on Friday on North Wall Avenue in Farmington.

Meanwhile, water supply forecast report that snowpack in New Mexico’s mountains has gone from dismal to stupendous. The state’s river basins depend on spring snowmelt for water and so far have reported an above-average snowpack.

Snowpack was below 100 percent in most of New Mexico’s mountain ranges a year ago, according to officials.

For example, the snowpack in the Rio Grande Basin, which includes parts of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains and the Jemez Mountains, hit 134 percent of average. The snowpack last year at this time was 76 percent of average.

The heavy snow also is good news for New Mexico’s ski industry, farmers and municipal water managers.

“Mother Nature has been generous,” said Deborah Owen, director of communications for Ski Santa Fe and Sandia Peak Ski, told the Santa Fe New Mexican. “It has been a decade since the snowpack was this good.”

Kate Riggs, a city carrier for the U.S. Postal Service, delivers mail on Friday on Harvard Drive in Farmington.