Watch: Hurricane Ridge nearly lives up to its name with weekend blizzard
PORT ANGELES, Wash. -- You have to think the weather at a place called "Hurricane Ridge" wouldn't necessarily be among the calmest places on Earth.
It was sure true on Saturday when the visitor's center at 5,250 feet was blasted with wind and snow amid a potent storm. The wind gauge measured gusts between 40 and 55 mph Saturday morning with heavy snow, leading to scenes like this (courtesy of Olympic National Park rangers)
"It is like being sand blasted," rangers wrote on the Olympic National Park Facebook page.
Park officials said the storm forced the closure of the visitor's center due to heavy snow on the roads.
"Winds like these transport snow onto the road and parking lot just as fast as our road crew can clear it. In just an hour, feet of snow can accumulate over freshly plowed pavement," rangers said. "Additionally, visibility is compromised and functioning outside is difficult with substantial winter clothing (goggles, waterproof jacket with hood, waterproof pants, face mask, warm hat, etc) and impossible without."
Temperatures were in the upper 20s during the storm, making for wind chills in the teens.
The road crews told officials the storm erased all the work they did clearing the roads on Friday.
"It's like were were never here," they said.
The storm brought an estimated 5-6 inches of new snow, leaving their base around 113 inches before settling and melting under Sunday's warm front had knocked the base back to around 104 inches as of Sunday night.
By the way, this is what it normally looks like up there when it's not a blizzard: