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Your AM snowstorm road report

I just drove from the West End to the East Hillside. Here’s what I observed/experienced:

  • Visibility is very poor. This has improved quite a bit since I first set out, since the sun has come up. Mainly your enemies today are wind and blowing snow.
  • I-35 is quite clear, but slow going. I had to completely stop twice. I think the top speed was about 45, though it might have reached 50 for a moment.
  • Mesaba is a traffic jam. No surprise.
  • Second Street has a lot of snow on it. Also people are having difficulty finding their lane. There are three lanes on Second Street, and even in the best conditions it is wise to choose one. Thankfully, no one is doing that thing where you blow through the lights just as they change green. That would be stupid on a day like today.
  • Fourth Street is worse than Second Street.
  • The avenues are slippery and difficult to negotiate. As you’re spinning your wheels up them or sliding down them sideways, please take a moment to realize that this is why your house with an incredible view is affordable.
  • No matter how bad it gets, there’s always someone who is in a big effing hurry and thinks that tailgating will help. You will encounter that person today. Please try not to be that person today.

Please post your experiences and the road conditions for your part of the region in the comments. If you are somewhere that’s warm and doesn’t get snow, and feel the need to point that out in the comments, please realize that the rest of us are rolling our eyes and making the “jerk-off” gesture with our dominant hands

32 Comments

brian

about 10 years ago

Woodland Ave isn't bad. Visibility was indeed low. Biggest problem I had was timing the crossing of a busy street with the people sliding down and not getting traction on the way up.

Touchdown

about 10 years ago

I drove about 2 blocks and decided to turn around and take the bus.

Adam S

about 10 years ago

Interstate is fine.  No ice, little snow.  I drove the speed limit and felt that there was no unneccessary risk doing so.

The streets downtown are snowy and a little slick.  it will take you 40-50% longer to get through downtown than usual.  You can't maintain 30+ mph it takes to hit all the greens if you're on 2nd or 3rd St.

Overall, there's no reason to not do anything you're planning on doing due to road conditions.

Barrett Chase

about 10 years ago

Yeah, I kept thinking on the freeway that if not for the other cars, it would be pretty much a normal day. I'm not sure why it was all jammed up, but it was at that time.

mevdev

about 10 years ago

My report:

I walked from my home in West End to my place of work in the Lincoln Park Business District.

I saw snow. I saw people driving too fast. My scarf didn't quite cover my whole face so I had my hood on and I was looking down most of the time.


In fact, 90% of the walk was completely white. It is like I was walking into the light. For an entire mile I thought I was dying and going to heaven. Drifts up to a foot.


Lake side of the street is your best choice because of the blowing snow.

speechie

about 10 years ago

Roads in Superior are clear but a little slick. If you head out towards South Range or Foxboro, however, you will run into more snow and poorer road conditions--nothing to write home about, but definitely worth slowing down for.

farglebargle

about 10 years ago

If you drive in Duluth, getting four wheel drive should be a life goal.

Calk

about 10 years ago

I drove my kid to school today at 7:30 am, from Chester Park to above Central Entrance. I turned up 11th Ave E and was doing fine until someone turned in front of me, and then wobbled slowly up the hill. So I turned around and drove down to 9th Street, right onto Mesaba, and up. Lots of traffic, slippery roads, but people drove pretty carefully. It was slow going driving back to Chester Park, with a line of cars lined up on Skyline at that 4 way intersection that drives me crazy every day. People were pretty careful taking their turns though. Got home, and ran into a friend outside our house on the avenue, who was stuck. Mr Calk and I tried to push her up the block, and 2 strong guys joined us. I don't want to go back out in this.

edgeways

about 10 years ago

I find a lot of four wheel drivers act overconfident in snowy/icy conditions and put others at needless risk. Four wheel drive _is_ nice, but not strictly necessary in the city. Lived here 12 years, never owned a 4-wheel drive, never have been stuck in the snow in Duluth proper and the 2 acidents I have been in had nothing to do with the weather, just stupid drivers in general.

MJ

about 10 years ago

Hip hip hip hooray for the DTA!  People often think that taking the bus is some sort of sacrifice, but on days like today, it's the best.  If you can take the bus, do it!

I'm in the same area as Calk, and that about covers it.

Sue

about 10 years ago

I-35 North wasn't to bad coming into town from Proctor but getting up 21st east was a little bit interesting about an hour ago, probably had more to do with the person who had to pull out in front of me and then decided they couldn't even attempt to get their car moving, causing me to slow down and spin my wheels the rest of the way up the hill.  I will never understand why people can't seem to use their brains at least a little bit when we get snow. Oh well, a bit more and we can start playing in it. And it never feels as cold when there is snow on the ground.

kerc

about 10 years ago

I dropped child #2 off downtown at the Y .... 

I almost got into an accident because the lady in front of me was being *too* careful. I'm sure I passed other cars along the way, I'm not sure I noticed any other morons.

The wind was blowing strong enough for my 4 yo to observe the car in front of us blowing in the wind. Construction crew parked in the handy dandy drop off zone at the y(is that a post in and of itself?) combined with snow up to her knees on the edge of the street = child late for gym and swim.

I then headed over the bridge - very little traffic, slightly more snow in Soup Town and the snow plows are out in full force. Had I even seen a plow in Duluth? Not sure.

mat

about 10 years ago

during my four mile drive to work, i was tailgated by not one... not two... not three...  but four giant pick ups / suvs. 

i was going a mile or two an hour under the speed limit down arrowhead which was clear but slick in spots.

my fingers are crossed that each one of these "i've got four wheel drive so get the fuck out of my way" morons end up in the ditch today.

Barrett Chase

about 10 years ago

Duluth's disparity of vehicles is definitely a contributing factor to problems on the roads. 1/3 four-wheel-drives, 1/3 normal cars, and 1/3 rear-wheel-drives from 1992.

Mary

about 10 years ago

Messy over here by Ashland--the western entrance to town along Hwy 2 (by the Best Western, etc.) is closed due to the wind & drifting snow.  This was ultimately a good thing for me, though, as my road into town is the snow emergency route when they close Hwy 2...so that was plowed fairly well.  I'd estimate we got about 6-8 inches of snow at my house west of town--they probably got more over towards Bad River/Saxon.  Not the worst I've seen by far, but still fairly messy.

jay

about 10 years ago

I begged the wife for us to take the bus in this morning and she said its just a couple inches.  As we were slopping our way down woodland to 3rd st, saw the car in the pole on 3rd and 4th, I was cursing her very existence, cuz of course, its me who has to drive in the shit.  Ah, the joys of seasonal affective disorder.  Can't wait for the drive home!  not.

Olaf Benjaminsen

about 10 years ago

I was born in Duluth in 1943. After buying our first home out on w. Arrowhead Rd. in 1964, I never missed a days work driving down the hill to Lake Ave. In 1967 we sold and bought a home out on 76th Ave. W. Same result, no problem with a 2 wheel drive (rear wheel) automobile.

In 1972 we moved out to Park Point, same result, although going to work was a short drive.

I don't understand the current obsession with the weather. For crying out loud, it's winter and Duluth, get used to it.

The Big E

about 10 years ago

I want to ski--this so-called "snowstorm" is officially lame.

vicarious

about 10 years ago

Olaf is wise. Very wise.

Barrett Chase

about 10 years ago

Well, Olaf, I see where you're coming from. But people still need to know what to expect so that they can know how much time to plan for their commute. Rushing is what causes accidents. The internet is primarily about information.

Barrett Chase

about 10 years ago

We share information with each other to be helpful. "How much extra time will it take for me to get to work?" Not much? Great. Quite a bit? OK, then.

vicarious

about 10 years ago

I guess I was referring (through Olaf) to the way the media hypes these non-events. Why isn't there the same level of hysteria when a minor thunderstorm is forecast in the summer?

Barrett's post was actually useful...no offense intended.

Barrett Chase

about 10 years ago

Understood. For me at least.

Calk

about 10 years ago

You know that great U-Tube video of the intersection at 19th Ave E and 8th where all the cars go through the intersection and crash into each other? Well, that ALMOST happened to me this afternoon. Some quick thinking was called for, and I turned into the curb to avoid catastrophe. That video has a special meaning for me now.

Wes Scott

about 10 years ago

I once drove to Duluth after a blizzard
just to see how the heck Duluthians managed
to drive those hillsides. I was very impressed at the skill levels. Entire state got hammered today.

vicarious

about 10 years ago

"The internet is primarily about information."

Barrett, 

I apologize for swerving (Look! I related this comment to driving in the snow!) off subject. But, I think the internet is more and more about entertainment and "connecting" (whatever that means)and less about gleaning pure information.

The internet is the new TV.

TimK

about 10 years ago

The internet is a series of tubes!

Jessica

about 10 years ago

no, the internet is increasingly a series of tools, but we digress.

this "snowstorm" was lame.  anything less than 6 inches is for wussies.

-Berv

about 10 years ago

In blizzards and in bed

huitz

about 10 years ago

We were partying in Madison during the event.  Terribly concerned of the potential shoveling nightmare upon return to Duluth since Madtown got a nice wet and heavy 17" or so with drifts upward 3'.  Pleasantly surprised that the snowplow left the driveway here blocked by a tiny, almost laughable, 2 inch berm.

Calk

about 10 years ago

huitz, were you part of that gigantic snowball fight at the University? It made national news. Looked like fun.

huitz

about 10 years ago

Calk, unfortunately not.  We didn't find out about it until after the fact :(

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