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Storm fails to dump new snow in Big Bear

February 5, 2010 12:21:43 AM PST
Though Friday's storm didn't dump new snow in Big Bear, resorts anticipate many to flock to the mountains this weekend.Usually, when night falls and temperatures drop, any precipitation in the air will fall as freezing rain or snow, but that did not happen Friday evening. This break in the weather gave communities time to remove tons of week-old snow.

Snow plows were working overtime to clear up the dirty, piled up snow on roadways in anticipation of another snowstorm. Along Moonridge Road, front loaders and giant snow blowers worked at a fast pace to prep the roads for Friday's forecast storm which means more traffic.

"We're trying to get this all widened out for the businesses and the ski slopes so there is more parking because I'm pretty sure that it'll be pretty busy this weekend," said one worker who was busy cleaning the roads.

There was a brief period Friday when light, freezing rain turned to snow, but at that time, it didn't last long.

Businesses in the mountains have been negatively impacted by the recent heavy snow, but most owners are realists when talking about snow.

"On the weekends, when the roads are clear and the people can get up here, it's helped business, so it's a two-edged sword for us. Too much snow hurts us, but a little bit of snow helps us," said Big Bear business owner Jay Tait.

Though conditions can change rapidly in the mountains, through most of the morning and afternoon, the major mountain freeways were clear and dry. There were no chain restrictions, but that may change over night.

In fact, the roads were opened earlier Friday morning, which was welcomed news for the local ski resorts.

"The new snow definitely brings up more business and we like that," said Roger Vieau of Snow Valley Resort. "People see the snow from down below up in the mountains, and when it clears out, they come up here."

At Snow Valley, when weather conditions are right, they continue to make snow.

"We actually kept the snow making going not last night but the night before and previous nights, because even if we have a lot of snow, we can never have too much snow," said Vieau.

Snow Valley Resort's parking lot was packed, and they foresee it being that way throughout the weekend.

Mountain-goers should make sure to bring chains due to the unpredictable nature of mountain weather conditions.