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Interstate 25 between Monument, Castle Rock apparently avoids closure from snowstorm

MONUMENT, Colo. (KRDO) -- As of early Friday afternoon, authorities hadn't seen a need to close the 18-mile stretch of I-25 between Monument and Castle Rock because of heavy snow, and with conditions quickly improving it appeared that a closure wouldn't be necessary.

One positive sign happened just before 8 a.m. on Monument Hill in both directions; two convoys of four plows each, led long lines of traffic that was taking advantage of the better traction provided.

"Conditions were much worse closer to Castle Rock," said a driver for the Colorado Department of Transportation's Safety Patrol. "We needed more plows there. When the convoys began, the drivers just naturally fell in line behind them."

Another promising development was at the nearby Pilot Truck Stop; it was busy Friday, but not as busy as it was Thursday when it exceeded its 112-space capacity by around 40 trucks and police had to provide temporary traffic control.

With concerns about driving decreasing and snow beginning to melt, residents of Monument and nearby Palmer Lake turned their attentions to clearing several feet of snow from their streets, parking lots, driveways and sidewalks.

"I would think about two feet yesterday and maybe 13, 14 inches overnight, I removed with my snowblower," said John Broussard of the sidewalk around his acre of property in Palmer Lake. "The town had agreed they would maintain it, and they did for a couple of years, and then it wasn't being done. So, we, the neighbors and I, we just took it upon ourselves to start clearing the sidewalk."

Broussard had to take a break when the thick snow clogged the blades of his snowblower.

Tineasia Duke, of Monument, talked about returning to work in Colorado Springs after staying home Thursday because of the weather.

"My driveway was completely blocked, and my son and I were basically -- for the last half of the day yesterday -- shoveling our driveway out," she said. "As far as my drive into work today, I don't know. I'm not for sure if the plows have been out or not, but I'm going to try it."

Duke likely had no trouble because the snowy, icy pavement had become just wet by mid-morning.

The blast of winter weather didn't stop a group of Minnesota college students from making a Spring Break trip to Las Vegas.

"We're going rock climbing," said Aidan Khan. "We saw that it was going to hit like a few days before we left -- but, like, we weren't going to change our plan. We knew, you know, we'd have to find a way around somehow. The drive today, it was like 15 or 16 hours as opposed to, like, 11, if we could go on I-70, I think."

The Colorado State Patrol said that after troopers responded to 87 calls for service during the first 12 hours of the storm-- ranging from minor crashes to abandoned vehicles -- there were 72 additional service calls in the next 12-hour period through midnight Thursday.

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Scott Harrison

Scott is a reporter for KRDO. Learn more about Scott here.


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