Cortez was expected to get 1-3 inches of additional snow on Tuesday, the National Weather Service said Tuesday morning as it extended the winter storm warning until noon. The high temperature Tuesday was expected to be 28 degrees, and low on Tuesday was expected to be 8 degrees.
Ten to 20 inches of snow was expected at higher elevations, along with 25-35 mph winds and 60 mph gusts. Visibility will be reduced to a half-mile at times.
Saturday’s Montezuma-Cortez basketball games in Pagosa Springs were rescheduled for Wednesday, Jan. 25.
A winter storm warning remained in effect for Cortez, Mancos, Durango and the surrounding areas until 5 p.m. Saturday.
Yellow Jacket and Dove Creek received about a foot of snow on Saturday, according to reports from the National Weather Service. The mountains had received about a foot of snow through Saturday morning.
On Saturday, a tour bus off Lizard Head Pass, the San Miguel Sheriff’s Office said, and all passengers were reported uninjured after they were transported to Telluride, their original destination.
Rob Englehart, superintendent of the Montezuma Road and Bridge Department, said 12 county snow plows were out at 11 a.m. on Saturday, and he expected them to be hard at work all day.
“At 6 a.m. there was nothing (in Cortez),” he said. “Now there’s about 4 to 10 inches, so it’s coming down fast.”
He said all the county roads were “terrible,” with slick spots, deep snow drifts and poor visibility. The plows worked to clear the main arteries of each district, starting with paved roads and then moving on to gravel side streets, but Englehart didn’t expect every road to be clear by Saturday night. His crews got back to work early Sunday morning.
“We’ve been pretty lucky this time,” Englehart said. “People are driving carefully, and a lot of them are staying home, just trying to clear their own driveways. ... I’ve been really pleased with the way people are driving.”
Traction laws also are in effect for Coal Bank, Molas and Red Mountain passes on U.S. Highway 550, and U.S. Highway 160 at Wolf Creek Pass.
The Colorado Avalanche Information Center said there is considerable avalanche danger throughout the San Juan Mountains and in the central mountains of Colorado, because of heavy snowfall and wind.
The Pacific storm landed on the California coast between Los Angeles and San Francisco, Andrus said, and headed northeast through Colorado toward the Midwest.
The Cortez area has received 16.4 inches of snow this year, more than double the normal amount for January, Andrus said.
The Durango Herald contributed to this article.