Have family coming for the holidays and want to dispatch a case of cabin fever? Send them to Keystone for some last-minute holiday shopping or a day of sight-seeing in the wintery Black Hills.
But that could change at any second in Keystone. With our altitude and the nature of Black Hills weather patterns, we are blessed with the occasional Chinook wind in the middle of winter.
Chinooks can range from a gentle puff of warm air to a rush of heat. They always bring a significant change in temperature.
How significant? Spearfish, to the north of Keystone, has held the world record for temperature change for more than seven decades. On the morning of Jan. 22, 1943, the temperature in Spearfish rose from -4 degrees to +45 degrees in just two minutes. That's a 49-degree change. Drivers had to stop in the middle of the street because their windshields suddenly frosted over.
A few flakes of snow were visible today, not an unexpected sight in the Black Hills of South Dakota on Nov. 18. But snow does stir the heart, because the Black Hills are as much fun in the winter as they are in the summer. More fun, a few diehard souls would argue.