Dan Miccolupi's search for salt came to a disappointing end at Lowe's in West Manchester Township.
Like the two other stores where Miccolupi stopped to buy salt Tuesday evening, the 1175 Carlisle Road home-improvement store was also sold out of salt.
"I'm that guy out looking for salt before the storm," he said as he left the store empty handed. "It's really unfortunate I didn't buy more to stock up."
Instead to heading to a fourth store, the West Manchester Township man said he and his wife were going to get dinner and head home.
A number of stores in York County reported they are out of the ice-melting material, and it's not clear when supplies will be restocked.
"It's like the military; you can ask but you may not receive," said Carolyn Black, who works at Tractor Supply, 901 Loucks Road in York City.
The depleted supply of salt came just after a storm dumped over 6 inches of snow on York County on Monday and just before a second storm was to bring a mix of snow and ice on Tuesday.
Going fast: The West York Agway location at 2650 W. Market St. in West Manchester Township had a few bags of salt left Tuesday afternoon, but owner Ben Geesey didn't expect them to last for long.
"Availability is just really low right now," he said. "Every order I had was canceled because there's no raw materials."
Wood pellets, used in home heating systems, have also been in short supply of late because of the harshly cold temperatures, Geesey said, adding that the store had sold out of them.
Homeowners who solely use pellets to heat their homes may be out of luck if they run out and may have to resort to alternative methods, such as an electric space heater, to heat their homes.
In the hour since Black started her shift at Tractor Supply Tuesday afternoon, she said she received about a dozen calls from people looking for salt. Another dozen called looking for pellets.
Black said she had to tell all the callers that the store had sold out of both. She said she doesn't know when the store will get another shipment of either material.
Sold out: K&M Home Center at 127 North Street in Loganville was also sold out of salt and pellets, said Brian Kern, vice president of the store.
"Only thing we have left are snow shovels," he said.
After a series of mild winters the past few years, Geesey said, it's been a number of years since his store ran out of salt.
When salt was in short supply a number of years ago, the store was able to secure a bulk order and employees were left to bag it themselves for individual sale.
"That was a lot of work," Geesey said. "It's been a long time since it's been this bad."
— Reach Greg Gross at firstname.lastname@example.org.