Estes Park gets hit with hail that looks like snow in July

The storm that hit the city Wednesday night caused a traffic jam on East Elkhorn Avenue.

Estes Park, Colo. – A severe storm dumped several inches of hail on Estes Park Tuesday night, snarling traffic and requiring snowplows to clear the mess.

The storm hit just before 10 p.m. Wednesday with hail that was probably less than 1 inch, but there was plenty of it — enough to trap vehicles on East Elkhorn Avenue (U.S. 36).

Ping-pong ball-sized hail was reported in the Sove Prairie area of ​​the Cameron Peak burn area north of Estes Park at around 9:48 p.m.

Some videos posted on Twitter showed small plows clearing piles of hail from Wednesday night into the morning.

The hail hills didn’t seem to keep Estes Park visitors away, as some children were seen jumping and playing in the thick mounds of snow.

On Elkhorn Avenue, Kind Coffee had to plow its parking lot overnight to make sure customers could park the next day.

“I’ve never seen it put together like this,” said owner Amy Hamrick.

The long-time business owner has kept his shop in the same location since 2004, which is when he felt the effects of the floods in 2013.

“I think since then everybody is really aware of where the water is going to come from. We have flood packs in place. We have evacuation plans.”

The level of preparedness is also something the city of Estes Park has been working on in recent years.

“You know, stormwater management, floodplain management, capacity building has really been a focus for the city in recent years, especially after the 2013 flood,” he said. call these things can come out of nowhere, really.

While he said Estes Park is used to bigger storms during the summer months, he said more crews are put on standby during the season because there are more visitors in town.

“So we’re working hard with our staff to train on emergency response and notifications — making sure we can reach all businesses,” Rusch said.

A Colorado Flood Watch remains in effect and expanded from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Thursday, as heavy rains could cause flooding in low-lying and burn-scarred areas.

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Estes Park gets hit with hail that looks like snow in July

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