"I think spring is buried under all the snow, and I'm just ready for it to go," said Kelly Smith, huddling with her husband under an awning in downtown South Bend, Ind., waiting for a ride. "I came out this morning with no coat on, and it's snowing again. I think Mother Nature just has some attitude."
Wednesday's storm was moving east, hitting the Great Lakes in Ohio, Pennsylvania, upstate New York and parts of New England. Some places, including Vermont, where 2 feet of snow was forecast, could see their heaviest snowfalls of the winter before the storm dissipates over Canada.
Meteorologists warned that as much as 9 inches of snow could fall in parts of southeastern Michigan by Wednesday evening, with 4 to 8 inches in Detroit. Hundreds of schools were closed there, and drivers traversing slippery roads fell victim to rear-end collisions, ended up in ditches or had other snow-related mishaps. AAA Michigan said it responded to 900 calls for help, mostly in the southern part of the state.
The picture was similar in upstate New York, where hundreds of schools called off classes after the weather service warned that a blizzard with winds of up to 50 mph could paralyze the area from western New York to the Adirondacks.
Ed Szymanski was just finishing his first pass with the shovel outside a Buffalo post office when he declared that he'd had enough of winter.
"Too long," he said of the season as snow hit his eyeglasses and melted into droplets.
The late-winter storm was helping to edge snowfall totals toward the top of the record books.
Totals in southeastern Michigan could come close to breaking a 133-year-old record. The storm was likely to move the Detroit area close to the seasonal snow total record of 93.6 inches set in 1880-81, the weather service said.