Lake County residents hoping for a white Christmas got their wish this weekend with back-to-back storms that provided a one-two punch and an estimated 15 inches of snowfall.
Lake County Emergency Management Director Don Thomson said the majority of the snow fell on Sunday, when 11 inches accumulated during blizzard conditions that resulted in the closing of parts of I-29 and I-90 and no travel recommended on state highways. The first three inches of snow fell on Friday with another inch on Saturday.
Thomson said it's hard to accurately measure the snowfall Friday because the snow was melting initially.
Thomson said the National Weather Service was predicting Sunday's storm, but its severity was unknown and local television stations were downplaying its strength.
The intensity of the storm struck Lake, Miner, Moody and Brookings counties.
Lake County Highway Superintendent Scott Mathison said road crews were out early Saturday and Sunday mornings, but called back in Sunday morning due to limited visibility. Road crews were back out early Monday morning (today). All highways are clear Monday, he said.
Road surfaces vary with some portions clear and others ice-covered.
Both interstates are now open. I-29 was closed between Sioux Falls and Sisseton. I-90 was closed between Sioux Falls and Chamberlain. The closure was due to low visibility, icy roads and drifting snow.