Grocery and hardware stores around the Treasure Valley were packed with people trying to stock up on emergency supplies Saturday as forecasters called for additional inches of snow through the weekend.
At WinCo stores in Eagle, Meridian and Downtown Boise on Saturday, cash register lines wrapped to the back of the store. Some stores had been cleaned out of bottled water by late morning, and others’ stock of ice melt was entirely depleted.
“The stores have been absolutely jam-packed today,” said a WinCo corporate spokesman. “I expect stores will be packed until roads are impassable or it’s just too cold to go out.”
The spokesman said every checkstand at the chain’s Downtown location had been opened since 9 in the morning.
Other stores in the valley were seeing crowds from the storm, as well.
“It’s been a little hectic with people out doing precautionary shopping,” said Don Clay, a manager at Albertsons at 1650 W State St. in Boise.
Clay said essentials like bottled water were “selling briskly,” though his store still had some sidewalk salt and was expecting a large shipment of more later in the day.
“It’s like Christmas all over again,” Clay said. “Everyone’s preparing for the worst but hoping for the best.”
"It's a madhouse in there," one exiting shopper said to a woman arriving at Fred Meyer on Franklin and Orchard in Boise on Saturday afternoon.
Around noon, that Fred Meyer location had lines backed up at each clerked checkstand.
Those hunting for ice melt at Zamzows shared intel on what they'd heard about other items, such as roof rakes. One shopper offered to loan a Statesman reporter a roof rake – but said she’s helping a bunch of neighbors today first.
Home Depot stores were low on snow essentials like ice melt and shovels, as well.
“I don’t think you can buy a shovel anywhere,” Clay said.