Chain controls in effect Saturday morning; Stars aligning for big snow dump next week |

Chain controls in effect Saturday morning; Stars aligning for big snow dump next week


The first in a series of storms will clear out of Lake Tahoe Saturday morning, but the stars appear to be aligning for a monster snow dump next week.

Chain controls are in effect Saturday morning for travelers trying to reach Sierra-at-Tahoe and South Lake Tahoe. Travelers must have chains on their vehicles unless it’s a four-wheel drive with snow tires, from Twin Bridges to Meyers on U.S. Highway 50. The requirement will likely be lifted some time Saturday morning when the snow stops falling.

Squaw Valley Alpine Meadows and Homewood Mountain Resort are reporting 3-5 inches of fresh snow, while resorts on the South Shore received a little less. Sugar Bowl is reporting 7 inches.

The next storm, which is forecast to be a little stronger, is set to enter the region late this weekend.

The National Weather Service in Reno has issued a Winter Weather Advisory that goes into effect at 4 p.m. Sunday and lasts through 10 a.m. Monday.

Officials are forecasting 3-6 inches of snow below 7,000 feet and up to a foot above, and possibly a bit more in localized locations with lake effect snow downwind from Tahoe.

Travel will be difficult over mountain passes and could impact the Monday morning commute.

The latest road conditions can be obtained by calling 511.

The main event of the storm series could bring several feet of snow to the Sierra with low snow levels forecast from the outset.

Officials are still battling different weather models but said if the high-end of the prediction holds, there will be whiteout blizzard conditions and travel may be impossible and roads may be closed.

The service said the weather pattern remains unsettled into at least early February with an additional storm possible around the start of the month.

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