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Eau Claire (WQOW) - Eleven, that's the number of days we haven't seen snowfall since the start of 2013. For some it's a blessing, while others see it as a curse.
At Boyd Park in Eau Claire there's ice skating, snowshoeing and snow sculpture for the snow lover and if warm is more your style dip in to the warming shack for a hot drink or try the warm fire.
Whichever your choice, snow seems to bring out a love hate relationship in the Eau Claire.
"It's been a blessing. All that ice is now covered up," says skier Penny France.
Joyous for the outdoor enthusiast, but work for Eau Claire to keep commuter routes open.
"So that's your major arterial streets and we'll start on those as soon as it starts snowing. Our ultimate goal is to achieve bare pavement on those 86 miles of arterial streets," says Public Works Director Brian Amundson.
And this winter the city has contended with its fair share of snow.
"Up until Wednesday, snow has been reported every day since January 29th and it's snowed quite a bit lately," says Meteorologist Nick Grunseth.
"Clean up the residential streets from the four inches or so that we've had accumulate over the past week," says Amundson.
Once those streets are clear snow lovers take advantage of the fresh powder in the forest.
"Well for cross country skiing, having set tracks and fresh snow really helps. For snowshoeing, not having a freezing wind helps," says France.
But when the temperatures flirt with the freezing mark it causes a bit of a hassle for everyone.
"Any type of rain we get or even a wintry mix can have an impact on the streets," says Grunseth.
"We've probably used a little bit more sand than we have in the past. Because we've sanded some of our residential streets more because we had some ice accumulations from that rain about a week to a week and a half ago," says Amundson.
"But it depends on how mushy it gets. If things start puddling up then that's no good of course," says France.
So how does this winter measure up? The word from the meteorologist is it's much better than last year.
"So far this winter we've had about 29 inches of snow. It was a fast start, we had a big snowstorm in December," says Grunseth.
Which is nothing at all when you have the right tools for the job.
"I have a retired husband with a snow blower," says France.
Once you get your driveway all cleaned up you can stop down to Boyd Park where the winter fun lasts until 8 p.m. Thursdays through February.
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