February Makes Central Idaho A Record-Setting Winter Wonderland

Feb 28, 2019

Stanley is a snow-covered outpost in the heart of the Sawtooth Mountains. When weather conditions are bad, the tiny town of fewer than 100 residents can be completely cut off from the outside world.
Credit Matt Guilhem / Boise State Public Radio

After a mild January, February brought record snowfall to central Idaho.

Tiny Stanley, Idaho, deep in the heart of the Sawtooth Mountains, was cut off from the world this week. All roads leading to the town of fewer than 100 residents were blocked by avalanches or snow drifts Wednesday, February 27.

“Looking out across the meadow, it kind of looks like rolling sand dunes out there,” says Steve Botti, the mayor of Stanley.

He’s called the town home for 11 years. Looking out at his yard Thursday morning after several stormy days, he says there’s probably around 4.5 feet of snow on the ground.

“We probably had more snow in the February of 2017 here than this one, but this is right up there,” the mayor says.

While Botti believes the so-called “Snowmageddon” winter of 2017 brought more snow, that definitely wasn’t the case in Sun Valley.

“We reached 135 inches as of 8:30 this (February 28) morning,” Kelli Lusk, the spokesperson for the Sun Valley Resort, says.

“That puts us at the highest month-to-date month in our history – since we’ve been recording this since 1967. So, it’s pretty amazing,” says Lusk.

While snowfall in January was lacking, Lusk says February brought ideal conditions for winter sports. The famed ski resort plans to offer runs into April.

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