National Weather Service United States Department of Commerce


A significant spring Blizzard struck the High Plains this weekend, April 29-30, 2017. This two day event began with light snow Saturday across portions of northwest Kansas. The approaching system produced accumulating snow on Saturday mainly in portions of western and southwestern Kansas, and eastern Colorado. Snowfall extended northward also; however, areas that received one inch or less generally experienced melting due to very warm surface temperatures. Generally around four inches of snow fell by Saturday morning across Wichita and Greeley counties in northwest Kansas and in eastern Cheyenne and southeastern Kit Carson counties in Colorado. Light snow continued into the overnight hours and into Sunday before picking up in intensity and coverage as the main storm system approached the region. Heavy snow and high winds produced very low visibility on Sunday along a Tribune, KS to Oakley, KS to McCook, NE line. This band of blizzard conditions was about 100 miles across and impacted nearly all roadways east of the Colorado border to Wakeeney, KS with many roads being officially closed. Power outages were numerous as power poles snapped under the weight of heavy snow and the force of high winds upwards of 60 mph. Vehicle slide offs were common as reductions in visibility combined with slick roadways caused drivers to lose control of their vehicles. The National Guard was called into action; however, they were forced to restrict rescues to medical emergencies only due to several of their vehicles becoming stuck as well due to extreme driving conditions.

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