Scenes from the blizzard of 2009
Up on the roof
Chris Wolf stood on the roof of his Kings Park home, shoveling off snow that had risen past his second-floor windows lest it turn his first floor into an indoor winter wonderland.
"It had to be a 4-foot drift on the roof," he said.
Wolf, 36, said he didn't think he had a leaky roof, but "I didn't want to find out."
He had been shoveling snow since 11 a.m. in the biggest snowfall he had seen "in at least 10 years," he said.
If it wasn't for the wintry blast, he said, he and his family probably would have gone to church. But the children's Christmas pageant there was canceled due to the weather, to no great disappointment of his children.
"They were too excited about the snow," Wolf said.
Indeed, on the ground below him, two of his children and a young friend lay in a snowdrift, squealing as the shovels of snow he sent landed in cold, mushy piles on their faces and heads.
Family pitches in
Shoveling was a family affair in Huntington, where Diana Arato, 16, spent the morning clearing her father's driveway along with a few family members and her best friend.
"There's, like, three girls in this house, so it kind of takes us a while," Arato explained. She donned a colorful outfit for the task - pink sweater, black flowered pants and a rainbow-striped hat. Her father's driveway slopes upward, so she had to approach with caution.
"You can't really go up and down" while shoveling, she said. "You fall. So you go from the side."
After shoveling, Arato said she planned to prepare for her role in the Cold Spring Harbor High School student production of "Me and My Girl." The play had to be canceled the night before due to the storm.
"Saturday's really a big night, but it's understandable," Arato said. "It's kind of a letdown."
"This is the first time I haven't been able to get out of my driveway, and I've lived here since 1987," he said. "There are 3-foot drifts up to the top of my car. I have a 4-foot drift of snow at the end of my driveway, from the town plows. I'll have to do an extraordinary amount of shoveling to get out."
Harvey Bennett, 59, was clearing a 3-foot drift of snow from his Amagansett tackle shop Sunday. "This is the most snow I've seen since I've had this store for 12 years," he said. "I spent the morning plowing out mine and my neighbor's driveways, in the woods. We had over 2 feet of snow back there."
Calling in some favors
Mike Ringle, 52, of Oyster Bay, spent Sunday afternoon digging his car out from the side of Berry Hill Road.
Ringle lives at the end of a 300-yard driveway, and he reasoned that leaving his car by the street was a safer bet than parking near his home.
Unfortunately, Ringle accidentally ripped his windshield wipers off while brushing the snow from his car. To make matters worse, his landscaper, who he hired to plow his driveway, failed to show up.
Ringle joked that it was getting about time to call a friend with a snowplow. "I've got a lot of favors I can ask for," he said. "Might have to do that soon."
Struggling against winds
Both the North and South Forks were hit with more than 2 feet of snow, according to the National Weather Service. But across the East End, the impact was much worse because of the strong north winds blowing snow over fields and vineyards. Southold Town and State Highway Department crews tried to keep Route 25 and town roads open, but blowing snow hindered their efforts. Long stretches of Sound Avenue in Riverhead and Southold, and Routes 48 and 25 in Southold were severely hit with high snow drifts that made passage almost impossible. Southold highway crews said they would not be able to get ahead of the snow until the wind died down.