Heavy snow driven by wind blowing up to 56 m.ph. brought blizzard conditions to parts of the Plains on Monday, closing highways, shutting schools and causing blackouts.
Wet, clinging snow and ice combined with the wind to break power lines and black out Colby, Kan., a town of about 5,300 people, for several hours. Several towns in north-central Nebraska also saw brief power outages.
Highways were closed in parts of eastern Colorado, southeastern Wyoming, western Kansas and the Nebraska Panhandle. Hazardous driving conditions led to scattered school closings.
Wind gusts created snowdrifts up to 4 feet deep in parts of southeastern Wyoming and eastern Colorado, and drifts grew to three feet near Colby.
A 14-inch snowfall was reported at Lead, S.D., in the Black Hills.
Interstate 70 was mostly closed from Goodland, Kan., to the Denver area, a stretch of more than 160 miles, said state police in the two states.