The High Country woke up to at least a foot of snow this morning with heavy snow still coming down. Ray’s Weather Center says the forecast is right on track for another 3 to 6 inches as the day unfolds. “The event is unfolding as expected. Temperatures aloft will get ever so close to freezing bringing the potential for sleet into play later today. The basic story line remains in place. Expect 15″-20″ across NW NC, with a few spots just above that 20 inch mark.” says Ray’s Weather at 7:00 a.m. this morning.
Watauga County also issued a state of emergency for the forecasted winter storm that was effective as of 2 p.m. Dec. 8. Board of Commissioners Chairman John Welch stated in the declaration that the storm is expected to bring heavy snow, ice and wind that could lead to widespread damages during the course of several days. “I have determine that there is an imminent threat of, or existing conditions have caused or will cause, widespread or severe damage, injury, or loss of life or property . . . “ said Welch in the declaration.
Jim Cantore of the Weather Channel was back on the air this morning at 8:00 a.m. reporting from the parking lot of the Courtyard Marriott Hotel where they have set up their operations. Boone has been getting a lot of coverage on the Weather Channel with regular updates from Cantore.
The National Weather Service updated their snow total forecast at 10:20 this morning now forecasting as much as 16 to 24 inches of snow across portions of southwest Virginia and north central and northwest North Carolina. NWS says snow is expected to continue into Monday morning with more heavy snow through Sunday evening. Many closures are being announced as expected with public schools being cancelled and App State re-scheduling exams that were due to begin on Monday.
Pictures from 9:00 a.m. Sunday morning: