Submitted by Ed Coombs

This is a very special series taken during the historical snow on the Tug Hill Plateau of upstate New York, January 12, 1997.  During that lake effect snow event, 77" of snow fell in 24 hours!!  Three day totals were 90"!  If you want huge dumps in a short period of time, there is no better place in the US than the Tug Hill Plateau, situated just to the east of Lake Ontario.  I came across these shots while surfing the web and Ed was generous to share them with me here.  
You can go to his site for more
, including a whole section on how they rescued the sleds stranded there during the storm.


When my brother in law John woke in the morning at camp he noted that it seemed in inordinate amount of snow had fallen overnight.  Because of the snow that morning John decided he would attempt to "break trail" to the main road 2 1/2 miles away. This photo shows John on his 1996 Ski Doo 583 MX, with the attempt. He went about 20 yards and his sled was buried. He went back to camp and John, his wife Cheryl, and their 4 guests began waiting out the storm.

Here is a photo of John during the height of the storm after his sled was buried. At some point he knew that they would have to leave camp.

Here is the group on the way out, with the snow still falling at a rate of up to 6 inches per hour. As you can tell the snow is incredibly deep. My
brother in law said to me "imagine trying to walk through snow that is fresh and is deeper than you are tall". This photo shows just how
difficult that walk was.

This shows them a few hours later and as you can see there are shoulder "dimples" in the snow from them breaking trail.  They made it approximately 2 miles out and they came to another camp where there were people who were also trapped. They spent the night in the camp. The next morning they attempted to make to the vehicles.

Here they are, the 3 guys (from left to right, John, Scott, and Carl) after they dug out the van at the gate!! John is 5 feet 6 inches tall!!!


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