May snowstorm dumps nearly a foot on Wyo. and Colo.

Cheyenne received 10 inches by sunrise Wednesday with another 2 to 4 inches of snow predicted. Up to 14 inches was measured in areas west of Cheyenne where a winter storm warning was in effect.

Ed Andrieski/AP
A woman uses an umbrella to ward off heavy snow in downtown Denver, May 1. The Denver area could get up to around 5 inches, but not much is sticking to the pavement, still warm after a weekend with temperatures in the 70s.

Another spring snowstorm — the fourth in as many weeks — dumped around a foot of heavy, wet snow on parts of Wyoming, closing schools and roads but bringing more relief from a prolonged drought.

Cheyenne received 10 inches by sunrise Wednesday with another 2 to 4 inches of snow predicted. Up to 14 inches was measured in areas west of Cheyenne where a winter storm warning was in effect.

Elsewhere, Lander received 11 inches, Riverton 6 and Big Piney 12. Around a foot of snow was expected in many mountain areas.

In Cheyenne, the heavy, wet snow brought down some tree branches and caused scattered power outages.

"Spring snow is heavier so the weight of that snow on the lines ... it affects the operation of the line," said Sharon Fain, spokeswoman for Cheyenne Light, Fuel and Power.

Fain said there were fewer than 100 small, isolated outages in the Cheyenne area.

Classes at K-12 schools in Cheyenne and surrounding communities as well as at Laramie County Community College were closed for the day. Local government office hours, including F.E. Warren Air Force Base, were delayed.

A 50-mile section of Interstate 80 between Laramie and Cheyenne was closed Wednesday morning and many highways in southeast and central Wyoming were slick with snowfall.

The snow was expected to end by Wednesday evening but near-record cold temperatures were predicted after nightfall, according to the National Weather Service.

Despite the lingering winter weather, the snow has been welcome, providing relief from a yearlong drought. Entering April, 84 percent of Wyoming was rated with severe drought conditions or worse. Each month from last November to March, the state saw five consecutive 12-month periods ranking as the driest on record since 1895.

Elsewhere, Army helicopter training planned for Chatfield State Park, in Colorado, has been postponed because of a spring snowstorm.

Helicopters from Fort Carson had planned water-based exercises at the park southwest of Denver on Wednesday.

There was no immediate word on when the training would be rescheduled.

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