Spring may just be one day away, as the official start of warm weather and flowers in bloom beings on Tuesday, but Arizona and parts of New Mexico were hit by a rare snowstorm over the weekend through Monday, causing power outages and school and road closings in addition to snow accumulation and an avalanche warning.
The National Weather Service released a warning through Monday which read, Expect widespread snow across northern Arizona into Monday with extremely hazardous driving conditions, especially in the mountains for central and eastern Arizona and New Mexico.
Prescott, Ariz. was hit with eight to 12 inches of snow while Flagstaff was hit with 10 to 14 inches of snow over the weekend, with schools closed in the city for Monday. The Arizona Snowbowl received 36 inches of snow as of Sunday night.
Coconino County authorities issued an avalanche warning for areas of northern Arizona on Monday in the mountain regions, as the heavy snowstorm could cause dangerous avalanches.
According to The Associated Press, 33,000 PNM electric customers were without power on Sunday afternoon in Albuquerque because of the high winds with the snow storm.
The Arizona Department of Transportation closed Interstate 40 in both directions and parts for 180 miles of Interstate 17 on Sunday due to the heavy snow and hard freeze on roads. At least one flight was delayed over the weekend with the University of New Mexico men's basketball team aboard travelling home.
New Mexico experienced high winds, up to 60 mph, while the New Mexico Environmental Health Department Air Quality Division issued a notice about high wind and dust for residents until Monday. The winds even caused a fire in Silver City, according to The AP, which burned about seven acres of forest Sunday afternoon.
The Arizona and New Mexico snowstorm comes while majority of the U.S. enjoys above-average unseasonably warm temperatures in Texas and the Midwest, but especially in the eastern parts of the country.
View the slideshow to see photos of the Arizona snowstorm.