Wind wreaks havoc, chain controls in effect and more snow is forecast for Tahoe |

Wind wreaks havoc, chain controls in effect and more snow is forecast for Tahoe

Strong wind blew in a storm that has dropped several inches of heavy, wet snow at Lake Tahoe and more is in forecast.

The National Weather Service Winter Storm Warning is in effect through 6 p.m. Wednesday. The Service said 4 to 8 more inches are possible above 7,000 feet, and possibly more than a foot along the Sierra ridgetops. Up to 2 inches are possible below 6,500 feet.

Homewood Mountain Resort on the West Shore is reporting about 10 inches of snow this morning on its slopes. Squaw Valley Alpine Meadows and Mt. Rose Ski Tahoe each reported up to 16 inches of new snow. Sierra-at-Tahoe reported 8-10 inches and Mammoth Mountain received 2-3 inches.

Travel will continue to be slow and difficult, especially over mountain passes. Chain controls are in effect for all vehicles except for 4-wheel drives with snow tires on U.S. Highway 50 from Twin Bridges to Meyers.

On the other side of the lake on Interstate 80, eastbound traffic is closed to all single axle trucks with double trailers at Applegate, in Placer County. Chains are required for all vehicles except for 4-wheel drives with snow tires from the Donner Lake interchange in Nevada County to 4.7 miles west at Kingvale in Placer.

The wind before the precipitation fell was perfect for surfers, but also was strong enough to blow down trees and limbs. 

NWS reported South Lake Tahoe had wind gusts up to 60 mph, Meyers had gusts up to 63 mph and down in the valley, Gardnerville had the strongest wind recorded at 88 mph.

A massive pine tree fell across the street from Heavenly Mountain Resort’s California Lodge, near Himmel Haus, that crushed a bear box, a mail box and tore down some power lines but luckily did not fall into three houses that were near. 

Several fires in the valley were sparked in the gusty winds, including one just outside the basin at the base of Kingsbury Grade where authorities called for voluntary evacuations.

Surfers on the North Shore took advantage of waves reaching up to 4 feet and the waters are expected to be rough again Wednesday.

After the storm blows out Wednesday night, the low temperature will be around 30 leading into Thursday where it will be mostly sunny with a high near 38. The overnight low will be about 24.

The mostly sunny skies and cool temps stick around for the weekend where highs will be in the upper 30s, maybe in the low 40s, with the overnight temps in the mid to low 20s.

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