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Thick snow continues in IE mountains

January 26, 2010 12:00:00 AM PST
All major roads heading into Big Bear were open Tuesday, but drivers were reminded to take chains as more snow fell Tuesday evening.

State routes 18, 330 and 38 into Big Bear were closed because of dangerous conditions after last week's storms. For the first time in several days, everyone who wanted to was able to get up to Big Bear Lake. All highways into the resort city were open Tuesday, although many smaller roads were still a mess.

The closure cut the community off from basic supplies like food and fuel, but deliveries came in Tuesday afternoon. Conditions were smooth for snowplows and the all-important delivery trucks.

Shelves at the Boulder Bay Store were once again filling up with much-needed supplies Tuesday.

"And they'll be better stocked a little bit later today as long as all the supply trucks keep coming up," said Bill LoPresti, Boulder Bay Store owner. "We'll have merchandise for our customers, neighbors. That's the main thing."

Many neighbors were still snowed in Tuesday.

Skiers and snowboarders haven't seen conditions like these in the San Bernardino Mountains in years. Tuesday there was a bit of sunshine to enjoy before the next storm rolled in.

"Unreal. Awesome. You can't even beat it," said snowboarder Jennifer Henricksen. "Tons of powder and great conditions right now."

Big Bear Lake has not seen a storm this strong since 1969 with more than 5 feet of fresh powder, creating drifts as high as 6 to 7 feet in some places. These conditions were great for skiers and snowboarders, but they had no way to reach the mountain until Monday afternoon due to closed roads.

While the roads are now open, schools in the Bear Valley Unified School District were closed again on Tuesday.

Mountain High Ski Resort in Wrightwood had its busiest Monday of the season, and the weekend was sold out at the resort. Last week's storm dumped 4.5 feet of snow at the resort.