West Seattle snow and ice: Tuesday afternoon updates

(refresh and scroll down for the latest info/pictures)

(Closure sign atop Alaska hill west of 44th, home to TV live shots earlier)
Morning updates and comments can be found here, but now it’s time to kick off afternoon coverage. Just got a text (all methods of contacting WSB are here) from Hopey (thank you!), who found Sno-Melt at NAPA, 4th and Dawson (South Seattle), 50-pound box for $44, “maybe a dozen left.” Also if you haven’t seen it yet, please see this post about city trying to get to side streets today. More to come, including photos from co-publisher Patrick‘s trip to The Junction, which he reports is bustling with shoppers (shop now before the weather goes south; as for WHEN it will go south, tomorrow morning SEEMS to be the forecasts’ semi-consensus).

1:30 PM UPDATE: Walk All Ways at Alaska/California is bare:

But the back lots are a little icy/dicey.

UPDATE 2:18: TR is out checking the streets; she’ll post updates in the comments.

3:53 PM UPDATE: Back! Been almost all over West Seattle, except for Alki (didn’t get closer to the beach than California Way/Harbor with a side stop at Seacrest). Also to White Center. One, we can say that SALT is hard to come by in any form; even Walgreens at 35th/Morgan is out of plain ol’ table salt. McLendon in White Center (as we wrote in comments) didn’t get that shipment they were hoping for – not as of our visit an hour and a half ago, anyway. Around both West Seattle and White Center, many streets – with just a few exceptions – are wet and passable, but watch out when night falls. (The biggest exception – Wildwood past Endolyne, leading to Fauntleroy past the ferry dock and Lincoln Park, so dry and bare it resembled the downtown streets we drove last night.) Got a note from the school district about tonight’s Genesee Hill school-closure hearing – am posting it separately. It includes some road and sidewalk condition info for those attending. Here’s the link.

4:12 PM UPDATE: New forecasts are out. Still calling for snow tomorrow – likely starting very early morning hours, continuing for much of the day, maybe up to 2 inches in the city. Now, adding a few pix we took during our travels the past couple hours – this is Trenton looking west from Westwood Village:

Note the dampness that may well refreeze – common on many “secondary arterials” we traveled as well as north half of California. Conversely, looking west on Trenton from 35th, the classic Icy Side Street of Death (as coined by Mona):

On the northeast corner of that same intersection, a snowperson:

Southwest of there, here’s the California SW curve between Fauntleroy Church (WSB sponsor) and The Hall at Fauntleroy:

That whole stretch from 35th to the ferry dock was in decent shape, though the shadier portion closer to 35th is likely to reglaze after dark.

4:34 PM UPDATE: As everybody braces for the likely snow by morning, the information’s going to start flooding in again. This is part of a buses/county roads news release just in from King County Transportation:

King County Metro Transit is planning on chaining most of its buses for the Wednesday morning commute, and warns bus riders that service could be delayed by the weather conditions throughout the day – particularly in outlying areas of East and Southeast King County.

Many buses may be on snow routing, if not for the morning commute then by midday and late afternoon. Metro may have to switch to snow routes in some locations with little notice. So, the best way to stay on top of the reroutes is to check the adverse weather information on Metro Online at www.kingcounty.gov/metro, or call the Customer Information Office at (206) 553-3000.

Bus riders are reminded to:

Be patient. Buses are not always on schedule in snowy or icy conditions. And, increased ridership during bad weather can result in crowded buses and a longer-than-usual wait on the phone for the Customer Information Office;
Dress warmly for the walk to the bus stop, expect delays, and wear appropriate footwear for the weather;
Head for bus stops on main arterials or at major transfer points such as park-and-ride lots, transit centers, or shopping centers; and
Riders should wait at bus stops at the very top or very bottom of hills, because buses are often unable to stop for passengers on inclines.

And of course, the county is again reminding motorists to be prepared for winter driving. That means: having plenty of gas in the car; driving with all season tires, chains and warm clothing; and please don’t abandon your vehicle in the middle of travel lanes.

4:57 PM UPDATE: We will keep this post going till about 5:30, after which we’ll start up the evening post. A couple notes before things get too crazy (again, the next snow isn’t due till early morning): If you were planning on attending the WSB Forum members’ holiday party that was postponed Sunday because of the icy roads, member Soclwrkrinmotn is volunteering to pick up the donations – they were for some really great causes, and this weather is making matters even worse for local people in need — check out this forum thread to get the details. You can use the forums’ new Private Message (PM) feature to contact him directly. Also, the Nature Consortium has canceled its Friday afternoon free monthly West Duwamish Greenbelt hike, anticipating the weather won’t be terribly conducive. Reminder, if you cancel or change an event or schedule – that includes school closures/delays – please e-mail, call, etc. to let us know so we can share the info – all our contact info is here.

5:31 PM UPDATE: Highline Public Schools (White Center southward) plans a 2-hour delay tomorrow morning that could become a closure if weather worsens. It’s listed on schoolreport.org along with other updates. Also, a plea just out of the WSB inbox:

To those who are buying up all the snow-melting salt in Seattle.

1 bag has lasted me 3-4 years. True Value got 500 bags last night and were out by noon today.c’mon people.a little goes a long way.you don’t need 10 bags!!! (the “per person” limit at the True Value hardware store). try thinking about others’ needs as well as your own!


Or at least, if you have some to share, offer to your neighbors too? P.S. One more note before we fold up this post and move to an “evening” edition – White Center-related news and photos are being posted, as available, at partner site White Center Now (whitecenternow.com) so if you know anyone in that area, you might invite them to check the site from time to time, or post comments on what’s happening where they are.

21 Replies to "West Seattle snow and ice: Tuesday afternoon updates"

  • P December 16, 2008 (1:18 pm)

    pet owners, please, please, please remember when walking your pets to wash off their paws when you get home. All that salt, deicer, etc, can be deadly to your pet! I haven’t see much coverage for our furry friends!

  • sue December 16, 2008 (1:30 pm)

    A neighbor dropped off a 50 lb. bag of salt for my boys to put down on the 6700 blk of 41st – worked like a charm – the ice isn’t gone, but at least my hubby was able to get off the hill this morning. Now to get to our sidewalks….

  • GenHillOne December 16, 2008 (1:33 pm)

    So I guess from that photo that Alaska isn’t considered a secondary road??

  • B'sMomma December 16, 2008 (1:45 pm)

    Just got back from Target in Westwood. 35th Ave. all the way up to Barton (didn’t go beyond that) is great! Target parking lot is in good shape. A few slippery spots in the parking spots. Target is a mad house! The Boots aisle is looking scarce. A couple moms were looking for boys size 12 boots and they are all out.

  • eileen December 16, 2008 (2:03 pm)

    How are the streets on Barton from the Old Fautleroy School to the Ferry dock?

  • GenHillOne December 16, 2008 (2:11 pm)

    Well, we haven’t seen the garbage collection or sanding truck, but everyone should feel good about the parking enforcement officer working north of the Alaska junction. *sigh*

  • WSB December 16, 2008 (2:16 pm)

    In White Center now. McLendon did not get that shipment. Sign on door that said salt and deicer in today now has date crossed off and says ‘unknown.’ Roads good but wet…beware later!

  • WSB December 16, 2008 (2:17 pm)

    eileen … I will check that stretch before going back to hq

  • Keith December 16, 2008 (2:27 pm)

    I’m really surprised at how quite a few area parking lots have been left as skating rinks. You’d think the businesses and/or their landlords would be out there with salt & sand to improve the situation on their own property.

  • WSB December 16, 2008 (2:33 pm)

    just drove that whole stretch, it’s fine but some moisture between 35th and endolyne area that will no doubt refreeze later….endolyne to dock and onto Fauntleroy totally dry and bare.

  • JenV December 16, 2008 (2:47 pm)

    I will tell you at this point, snow shovels are worthless unless you have salted first. Just spent 20 minutes trying to break up the ice on the sidewalk. It’s too thick. :(

  • HateDrivingInTheSnowAndIce December 16, 2008 (3:03 pm)

    Ok, there are so many posts that I can’t keep up – how about if I want to head to Target via Calif to Thistle to 35th? Anyone? Thanks!

  • WSB December 16, 2008 (3:08 pm)

    Just drove California all the way north and through some north admiral side streets, just as icy as South WS side streets, but steep California Way is clear and dry all the way to harbor, which is in great shape.

  • Cheri December 16, 2008 (3:09 pm)

    I work at the Delridge Home Depot and we arn’t expected to get a shipment of de-icer till at least thursday night at the earliest.

  • HateDrivingInTheSnowAndIce December 16, 2008 (3:10 pm)

    Calif south to Thistle is ok? Going up the hill from Morgan Junction? Can you tell – very nervous slow driver. But tired of being in the house with a 2 yo! :)

  • roguedelux December 16, 2008 (3:14 pm)

    Drove the following:

    Morgan down to California
    California up to Thistle to 35th
    35th via Barton to Delridge

    no problems with ice as of 2pm

  • Sue December 16, 2008 (3:18 pm)

    Once these storms are over, I highly suggest buying some of the salt/sand/whatever and stocking up. We kept a large bag in our basement from last season, and it doesn’t go bad. And then we have it when we need it, not trying to run all over town fighting with the demand for it and finding no one has it.
    Another thing I used to do in NYC was to keep a small canister of salt in the car. Sometimes I would park somewhere that was slick, and I couldn’t get safe footing to stand up from the car. I could sprinkle just a little for easier footing.

  • WSB December 16, 2008 (3:33 pm)

    Thriftway is snow panic central, couldn’t get a parking space- made it up Morgan hill, stopping at Walgreen.

  • JenV December 16, 2008 (3:41 pm)

    I went to T-way at lunch, it was pretty busy. Parking lot was bare and dry, so that was a plus. Now I am glad I went at lunch instead of waiting until after work.
    Sue, that’s a great idea about the salt in the car. I could have used that on Sunday night!

  • mike December 16, 2008 (4:01 pm)

    I went for a run a couple hours ago in north Admiral area. My route was north down California to Hamilton view point, then south along Sunset and other residential streets back to Admiral way, then south on Belvidere to Hinds, over to 42nd, and back up to Admiral.

    As mentioned by others, California to the viewpoint is no problem. But once I got off of California, the side streets were still pretty icy, except for a few patches where the sun melted it. Definitely had better traction on the sidewalks, although in places they weren’t much better. In fact, I found it easier to let the kid in me just sliiiide across the intersections until I got to the sidewalk on the other side. :)

    Hanford (at least between Belvidere and 42nd) also seemed ok, if I recall correctly.

  • fiz December 16, 2008 (4:34 pm)

    ‘Road Closed’ means just that. If the sign is on the hill – stay off it! You’re going to hurt someone, maybe even YOU.

Sorry, comment time is over.