Storm bumps up snowpack |

Storm bumps up snowpack

by Kurt Hildebrand

Chains or snow tires are being required on most highways in the mountains, including Highway 50 from Carson to Stateline and Kingsbury Grade from Foothill Road to the intersection with 50. Chains or snow tires are also required on Highway 395 south of Walker to Bridgeport.

All three routes over the Sierra are requiring chains or four-wheel drive vehicles. There have been five accidents on Interstate 80 since 8:13 a.m., with most at Gold Run and one at Truckee.

Snow that fell through the day on Saturday froze overnight and is making for some slick conditions.

Heavenly Ski Resort reported 53 inches fell during the St. Patrick’s Day storm. Kirkwood reports five feet of new snow over the last 48 hours.

The storm managed to improve the water picture in the Sierra, increasing the average for the Carson River basin by 7 percent to 37 percent for the year.

Natural Resources Conservation Service snow telemetry indicates Ebbetts Pass at the top of the East Fork watershed received 29 inches of new snow on Saturday, doubling the total snow depth since Wednesday, and increasing the snow-water equivalent by 4.8 inches.

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Scattered snow showers are expected to continue today with little snow accumulation under mostly cloudy skies with a high temperature of 39 degrees. The wind will pick up to 10-20 mph gusting to 30 mph late this morning and continue into the early evening as the storm begins to clear.

Temperatures are expected to be back up into the 60s by Tuesday, which is also the first day of spring.

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