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First Big Snowstorm of 2016-17 Season Falls on the High Country, Black Ice Warning in Effect

The National Weather Service tweeted out this image yesterday: “Here is a much clearer picture of the snow from the afternoon MODIS imagery today. #scwx #gawx

By Jesse Wood

The High Country received its first big snowstorm of the 2016-17 winter, about 6 to 8 inches across the region. The temperature also hovered around the subzero range – not counting the windchill – on Sunday evening.

Avery County Schools and Watauga County Schools cancelled classes on Monday. Lees-McRae College delayed classes until noon, and Appalachian State University, which doesn’t start the spring semester until next week, is operating on special conditions until noon.

The National Weather Service has issued a special weather alert for the potential formation of black ice: “Black ice will be possible across the entire region for the next couple days as daytime melting is followed by nighttime re-freezing on untreated roads and walkways.”

The black ice warning is in effect until noon on Tuesday:


When polling readers on snowfall in their neck of the woods, RaysWeather.com noted, “For the first time in a long time, everybody in western North Carolina and Southwest Virginia has received significant accumulating snowfall.”

Down the mountain, the Triad and Southern Foothills areas received more than the High Country is some cases. The State Climate Office noted, “Those highest totals came across the Triad and in the southern Foothills. Areas around Greensboro and Winston-Salem all reported more than 10 inches of snow, including 11 inches in Oak Ridge, Rural Hall, and Welcome. Farther south, parts of Lincoln, Caldwell, Cleveland, and Polk counties also reported 10 or more inches of snow.”

RaysWeather.com reported in its snow totals archive that Boone received about 7.1 inches of snow and Sugar Mountain received about 11 inches of snow over the past few days. 9.5 of snowfall was recorded at the Beech Mountain weather station at Fred’s General Mercantile. 

Here are some snow totals reported by the National Weather Service for the Blacksburg, Va., office region, which covers Watauga and Ashe counties.

Weather stations, for example, reported 8 inches in Jefferson, up to 6.8 inches in Boone, 7 inches in Valle Crucis, 6.4 inches in Bethel, 6.5 inches in Vilas, 6.6 inches in Blowing Rock, 7 inches in Todd and 7 inches in Foscoe. 

Below are snow photos from around the Boone on Monday morning. Photos by Ken Ketchie









Highway 105 at the Ingles Shopping Center Monday morning.


See more up-to-date totals for Watauga and Ashe counties here.


Avery County is the very top county in the center of the graph. See list of totals for Greenville/Spartanburg office region, which includes Avery County, here.