UPDATE: Travel advisories for Kootenay Pass, Paulson Summit lifted

The Kootenay Pass Thursday morning shows snow accumulation on the sides of the highway. — Photo courtesy Drive BC
The Kootenay Pass Thursday morning shows snow accumulation on the sides of the highway. — Photo courtesy Drive BC

Travel advisories for the Kootenay Pass and Paulson Summit on Highway 3 have been lifted according to the Drive BC Website.

The recent storm over the Southern Interior lowered the freezing level causing snow of accumulate at higher elevations and Drive BC to issue the advisories to the public.

Kootenay Pass Twitter messages said, “no avalanche control, a lot of snow pack has melted in the start zones thankfully.”

Work crews were busy overnight plowing snow and keeping the highway open at the Kootenay Pass summit.

The Nelson area received 61 millimeters of precipitation in the pasts 36 hours as the storm rolled though the West Kootenay region.

Environment Canada weather forecast calls for mainly cloudy skies with a 40 percent chance of showers. Snow level starts at 1300 meters, rising to 1700 meters this afternoon.

High for today is 14 C. Thursday evening partly cloudy with a low to 6 C.

YRB advises motorists not to take Kootenay Pass Highway

Marc Dale, Operations Manager / SE Kootenay District of Yellowhead Road & Bridge Ltd. is advising motorists to consider planning to travel another day or take the Kootenay Lake Ferry rather than take the Kootenay Pass after a storm dumped snow on the Southern Interior Highway.

"We are experiencing an intense weather system with heavy rainfall throughout the Kootenay’s which will continue through tonight and Thursday morning," Dale said.

"Rain, intense at times will cause reduced visibility and pooling water on the roads, drive with extreme caution."

Dale added that Wednesday and Thursday morning Kootenay Pass and west to Salmo is experiencing temperatures hovering around freezing with heavy wet snow rather than rain.

This low temperature is creating fog with reduced visibility.  Expect winter driving conditions from Salmo to Creston overnight tonight and early hours Thursday morning. The summit of Kootenay Pass has received 20 cm of heavy wet snow today with another 15 cm forecasted for tonight.  
 
"Winter driving conditions are in effect until noon tomorrow over Kootenay Pass," Dale explained.

"As most of us have our summer tires on if you do not need to travel over Kootenay Pass please consider planning your travel for another day or take the ferry.

YRB presently has winter resources patrolling Kootenay Pass and will continue throughout tonight, as well as patrolling all watershed areas in the valleys.

For up to date road conditions, check www.drivebc  and if you see any road hazards that require immediate attention call YRB’s toll free number 1-888-352-0356