Mt Rose Highway, Carson Pass reopens to traffic

Winter Driving Safety

Submitted to the Tribune
Mt. Rose Highway open after being closed for five days.

CARSON CITY, Nev. – The entire length of Mt. Rose Highway (State Route 431) is now open in both directions, with chains required for all vehicles except 4-wheel drive with snow tires. Trucks remain prohibited on the highway from Douglas Fir Drive to Incline Village.

Upper sections of the highway between Douglas Fir Drive and Fairview Boulevard were closed since Dec. 23 due to extreme weather conditions. Nevada Department of Transportation Mt. Rose Highway maintenance crews have worked staggered 12-hour shifts for 24-hour snow removal through the past week, battling as much as nine feet of snow and ridge-top wind gusts of 100mph to make the highway safe for travel.

Crews also utilize a controlled avalanche detonation system near the Mt. Rose Highway summit. With highway traffic safely stopped away from the slide area, a remote man-made detonation loosens snow on the roadside slope and sends it toward the highway, where NDOT plow operators are positioned to remove the snow. These controlled releases of snow help prevent unpredictable and potentially dangerous snow slides that could bury vehicles and motorists on the highway.

With additional winter storms forecast for the area, drivers are reminded that road conditions can change quickly. Drivers should check, download the NVRoads app or dial 511 before driving for updated highway conditions and controls.

State Route 88 was reopened at noon on Tuesday. Carson Pass is open from two miles east of Kirkwood to five miles west of Picketts Junction.

Highways 50 and 80 are still closed with no estimated time of opening. With those major roadways closed, traffic is backed up.

∙ Only travel in winter weather when necessary, leave enough time to safely reach your destination and plan your route to help avoid snowy/icy areas and steep hills.

∙ Before driving, check weather and road conditions by dialing 511 within Nevada (or 1-877-NV-ROADS outside of Nevada) or logging on to

∙ Remove snow and ice from all vehicle windows, mirrors, lights, turn signals and license plates.

∙ Buckle up.

∙ Turn on headlights to see and be seen.

∙ Do not rely solely on GPS to find alternate routes, as it could lead to unmaintained roadways or hazardous areas.

∙ Turn off cruise control.

∙ Avoid quick starts, stops and fast turns. Accelerate, brake and steer smoothly and gradually.

∙ Reduce speed. Speed limits are based on normal road and weather conditions, not winter road conditions.

∙ Do not slam on brakes. Apply steady pressure on ABS-equipped (antilock braking system) vehicles and pump the brakes if necessary on non-ABS vehicles.

∙ Always comply with all posted traction device requirements.

∙ Do not park or conduct snow recreation in roadside areas where parking is prohibited.

∙ Keep additional distance from other vehicles.

∙ Do not pass without good distance and sight clearance.

∙ Use extra caution on bridges, ramps, overpasses and shaded areas- they may freeze first.

∙ Maintain a high fuel level.

∙ If vehicle begins to skid, steer in direction of slide and slowly remove foot from accelerator

Highway 50 and 80 are still closed, causing traffic to back up.
Screenshot of traffic cameras


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