The start of summer was barely a month away, but snow covered much of Calgary and southern Alberta 33 years ago today.
It was, according to CBC reporter David Kyle, the worst such spring storm to hit the province in five years, when it arrived on May 14, 1986.
The storm toppled power lines, closed schools and generally made a mess of the highways.
“Winds gusting to 70 kilometres an hour cut visibility to zero on the highways and police turned motorists back,” Kyle told viewers on The National.
“Abandoned cars made for difficult driving in Calgary, although some drivers waited patiently to be rescued.”
Highway maintenance crews had been deployed from other parts of the province, so they could be on hand to clear the roads once the snow stopped falling.
The storm also grounded flights at the city’s airport for the entire day, leaving passengers stranded in the terminal.
“Until it lets up … Calgary and southern Alberta will remain virtually paralyzed,” Kyle said, summing up the situation.
A day later, the cleanup was in full swing, but the snow still hadn’t gone anywhere, as seen in the footage below.