You really shouldn't have waited to put on those snow tires.
Coeur d'Alene abandoned remaining hopes of a mild winter this week, with 8.3 inches burying the city on Monday.
"It's been snowing at the rate of almost an inch an hour," said climatologist Cliff Harris on Monday morning.
The snowfall broke the 6-inch record for the date, last set in 1953.
As the big, fluffy flakes dumped down all morning, cars were caroming and lodging into ditches accordingly.
The Kootenai County Sheriff's Department had already responded to 16 crashes before noon on Monday, with only a handful of minor injuries reported.
"And slide offs, we've had like a gajillion of them," said Lt. Stu Miller.
The Idaho State Police had responded to 11 crashes by late afternoon. Many occurred at the Fourth of July Pass exit on I-90, said office supervisor Alisha Rickert.
Incidents were more common as the sun emerged, she added.
"It's making it more slippery," Rickert explained.
The piling powder added to the 2.3 inches accumulated on Saturday, Harris said.
The snow blast should leave almost as quick as it descended, though. Harris predicted the chalky flakes would turn to rain today and Wednesday.
"That should at least cut the snow pack down a bit," Harris said.
He predicts lighter snow flurries the rest of the week, he added.
Will Boger ducked to avoid mud spewed by a passing car as he dug in his snow shovel by a Mobil gas station.
"I was very surprised at how heavy it was," Boger said of the brown clumps he toiled over. "I came out this morning and thought, 'Oh, man, this isn't going to be so easy.'"
Boger had enjoyed a front-row seat for treacherous traffic on Northwest Boulevard, though.
A car had skidded off the road down the block. And Boger had seen vehicles skating over the road all day.
"Numerous people came around the corner from the north, and ended up turning sideways," he said.
At the snow-carpeted Third Street docks, Pat Domy was dressed in layers as he and a Coeur d'Alene Resort team prepped to take down Christmas lights.
"It's much harder," Domy said of dismantling displays with snow pelting down. "All the electrical cords are under snow. We usually shovel it off and have to do it all again three hours later."
It's what the team is used to, he added.
"Just bring lots of extra clothes and gloves," he said. "A change of socks."
Tanner Murphy had no complaints as he jogged lightly through downtown Coeur d'Alene.
Clad in his usual running shoes and hat and gloves, he didn't mind his apple cheeks.
"I just like the snow. It's a change. It makes things even more exciting," Murphy said, adding that he was aiming for a 10-mile run. "It's just a nice snowy day."