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Southern suburbs buried by snowstorm; light accumulation to north

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DENVER -- A strong winter storm brought heavy snow and strong winds to the Denver metro area on Monday night and early Tuesday morning. While it had died down in Denver later Tuesday morning, roads and conditions farther south remained hazardous.

The storm packed its most powerful punch in areas south of Denver, particularly from Highlands Ranch to Castle Rock and down to Monument Hill.

There were more than 185 school and business delays or closures across the state, with a high percentage on the eastern Plains.

Several larger school districts closer to Denver, including Cherry Creek, Douglas County and Aurora school districts, announced school closures, as well.

RELATED: Closures and delays

RELATED: Watches and warnings

RELATED: Interactive radar

RELATED: Traffic updates

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The snow became widespread early Tuesday morning. A strong wind turned from the north and heavy bands of snow were expected into the morning in areas south of Denver, making travel difficult.

Both directions of Interstate 70 were closed from E-470 to Limon because of windy and whiteout conditions as late Tuesday morning.

As of that same time, I-25 had reopened from Monument Hill to Castle Rock, with crews having successfully cleared a jackknifed semitruck from the interstate.

The Colorado State Patrol reported an estimate of at least 100 vehicles were stranded in that area during the closure.

Southbound I-25 remained closed from Walsenburg to the New Mexico state line and northbound lanes were closed from the New Mexico state line to Trinidad.

I-25 just north of Greenwood Village on through Denver and north of the city was seeing nothing more than wet conditions as of 8 a.m., although some lingering winds were expected to last through the morning commute.

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Snow accumulations varied widely, but there was only about 4 inches being measured at Denver International Airport around 8 a.m., when the snow began dying down.

There still were more than 200 flights canceled at the airport in large part because of the wind, with gusts that reached 58 mph, so travelers were being urged to check the status of their flights.

Similarly, there were only about 3 inches of accumulation being measured at the FOX31 Denver studios around 8 a.m. Farther north, there were just trace amounts of snow in Boulder and from Erie north to Fort Collins.

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But farther south, it was a different story. Parker was recording about 9 inches and Castle Rock was reporting accumulations around 14 inches. In the southwest, Conifer was seeing about 15 inches of snow, while in the southeast, Ponderosa Park was seeing 16.

The Red Cross opened a warming shelter at the Douglas County Fairgrounds in Castle Rock.

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Data pix.

 

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