Officials issue winter weather advisory, upgrade snow amounts for Lake Tahoe

Staff Report
A view of Lake Tahoe Sunday morning from Dollar Point.

SOUTH LAKE TAHOE, Calif. — A quick hitting storm entering the Lake Tahoe Basin late Sunday afternoon is gaining steam with officials calling for higher accumulation of snow in the mountains.

The National Weather Service in Reno on Sunday morning issued a winter weather advisory and are expecting 3 to 6 inches of snow above 7,000 and 1 to 2 inches at lake level.

The service on Saturday was forecasting up to 3 inches for mountain passes.

“There may be some snow showers for Alpine and northern Mono counties as well, but the bulk of the precipitation stays along and north of U.S. Highway 50,” the service said. “Areas of heavier snow bands are possible which could lead to rapidly deteriorating conditions and reductions in visibility. Isolated lightning strikes {are} possible.”

The advisory is in effect from 7 p.m. Sunday through 5 a.m. Monday and the snow could affect the work commute to start the week. The service advises allowing for more time to reach your intended destinations and keep extra space between vehicles.

The wind advisory remains in effect from 2 p.m. Sunday through the evening. Officials expect the wind to range between 20 and 30 mph with gusts up to 50 mph and wind prone areas could see stronger gusts.

“The strongest winds will materialize where there will be downsloping wind potential: the Highway 395/Interstate 580 corridor from Lassen County through Reno and the Carson Valley and into Mono County,” the service. “This also includes the potential for damaging wind gusts particularly across the North Valleys, Washoe Valley, Carson Valley, South Lake Tahoe, and across wind prone canyons in Mono County. Expect Sierra ridgetops to gust around 100 mph.”

The wind is already breezy on Sunday. The forecast calls for 10 to 15 mph southwest winds in the morning before increasing in the afternoon. Rain is possible before 11 p.m. then snow and some possible thunder. The chance of precipitation is 90%.

Sunday’s high will be about 54 before dropping into the mid 20s overnight.

A 20% chance of snow remains into Monday morning before 8 a.m. before clearing and becoming partly cloudy with a high in the low 40s and the overnight low in the low 20s.

The wind will die down Monday to about 5 to 10 mph.

Tuesday is expected to be mostly sunny with a high of 51. There is a slight chance of rain and snow in the afternoon with the snow level around 8,000 feet dropping to about lake level after midnight. Little accumulation is expected.

A lingering threat of rain and snow showers stick around Wednesday but mostly it will be cloudy with a high near 50.

The service is forecasting a chance of showers from Wednesday into the weekend and in the extended forecast is seeing a pair of atmospheric rivers directed at the basin for next weekend.

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