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Snow more? That remains to be seen

Union Leader Correspondent

March 13. 2014 7:28PM
Humberto Lopez of Manchester walks down Em Street with a snow shovel during Thursday's snowstorm. (DAVID LANE/UNION LEADER)

The latest snowstorm was both a blessing and a curse for the Granite State, but it looks like winter won't be tossing any more white stuff our way for the next week or so.

According to Stacie Hanes, meteorologist for the National Weather Service, snow totals from the storm varied widely.

"It was pretty much all over the place," she said.

Way up north in Pittsburg, 14 inches fell; Berlin got about a foot of fresh snow. In Danbury accumulation reached just over 6 inches, while most of Belknap County only saw an inch or two.

School cancellations and postponements varied widely too. Manchester and Derry canceled school, while Goffstown and many other school districts called for a two-hour delay.

So far this year, Concord has gotten 72.5 inches of snow, almost 20 inches above average.

"We're only in the middle of March, so there's always a chance for another one or two major storms, but that's looking less likely," Hanes said.

In Exeter, highway director Jay Perkins said his crew is constantly busy and everyone has had enough snow already.

"When we're not out plowing or sanding, we're filling in potholes," he said. "It's a neverending battle."

Michael Perreault, public works director for the city of Berlin, said that the snow is putting a stranglehold on his budget.

"We're flying on one set of landing gear and one engine missing," he said. "We got a foot of snow and it's still snowing."

Though the cost of salt took a dive this year, fuel prices have jumped 40 cents since January, and Berlin has used 1,200 more tons of sand than last year.

"We haven't seen a winter like this in 30 years," he said.

That's good news for ski resorts like Waterville Valley, which also got a foot of snow, according to Marketing and Communications Coordinator Peter Sununu.

"Once the snow is gone, it's gone until next season so I want it piled as high as I can while the season is still here," he said. "It's great to get a storm this big so late because it will make for some awesome spring skiing as it starts to warm up."

Sununu said last weekend's warm weather resulted in a slopeside barbeque as folks flocked to the mountain to take in the sunshine. And this weekend could be a repeat.

"It looks like we're in for sunny skies on Saturday so you can be sure we'll be breaking out the grills again for another mountainside beach day," he said. "There's nothing like great snow and blue skies."

At Pats Peak in Henniker, the snow didn't fall very hard, said Lori Rowell, director of marketing, and despite school cancellations, the mountain wasn't packed on Thursday.

"It seems like most of the people that had the day off didn't make it out today," she said. "We are hoping that they will make it out this weekend to enjoy the snow."

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