Forecasters have issued a heavy snow warning for the North Carolina mountains as a storm moves in from Tennessee.
The higher elevations those above three-thousand feet started seeing big white flakes around 11 a-m.
Meteorologists predict 2 to 5 inches could fall along the mountainous Tennessee-North Carolina border. Along Beech Mountain, the snow is falling at a rate of about an inch an hour.
The heavy snow warning is in effect for Avery, Madison, Yancey, Mitchell, Swain and Haywood counties lasts until 6 p-m.
Avery Countys school district had planned to let students out at 1 p-m because of the snow, but had to begin releasing students shortly after 11 when the flakes caught everyone by surprise.
The National Weather Service said the rapidly moving cold front also could bring winds gusting to 60 mph.
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