HELENA (AP) - As roads were reopened and restrictions lifted, people in parts of Montana were digging out Sunday from deep snow as the National Weather Service predicted more was on the way.
On Saturday, travelers in parts of the state were stranded after some highways, including Interstate 90 east of Billings, were closed.
The Midland Empire Chapter of the American Red Cross provided shelter for about 300 people in Hardin and around 75 in Billings, said Linda Schicktanz, disaster services director. With evening and morning feedings, about 400 meals were served, she said.
The Red Cross was paying for some people to stay in a Hardin hotel Sunday, Schicktanz said. They had come into Hardin for medical care and side roads were not yet reopened for them to return home and back to town for more treatments today.
Sunday, the Highway Patrol said most roads were reopened and they were clearing up a number of minor traffic crashes.
The Highway Patrol reported a few dozen minor crashes Sunday, down from roughly 100 on Saturday when cars were sliding off snow-covered roads across the state.
There were no fatal crashes Saturday or through Sunday evening, authorities said.
The snow, which piled up to about 5 feet in places, was welcome news for drought-ravaged farmers.
National Weather Service meteorologist Rick Dittmann said it was exactly what was needed by dryland farmers and ranchers, with snow amounts the heaviest in years.
He said the storm was widespread and delivered a powerful, wet punch to much of Montana's parched countryside.
Snow amounts from the weekend storm ranged from 3 inches in Great Falls to a high of 50 inches at Shonkin, south of Fort Benton and just north of the Highwood Mountains. Hobson reported 36 inches, with 20 inches at Lewistown, where drifts were up to 3 feet.
Near Bozeman, Bridger Bowl closed Saturday because of exceptionally heavy snow and opened later than normal Sunday as crews worked to alleviate avalanche danger.
The ski area's snow report showed 71 inches of new snow since Friday.