More snow expected through Tuesday

The weekend's series of storms brought much more ... and less ... than predicted.

Meteorologists couldn't have been more spot on about the storm's longevity and impact.

Last week, the unheralded number of five to 10 feet of snow that would be dropped on the Sierras seemed at once an uncannily high and unattainable.

By press time Sunday, that number was a reality.

"We're trying to put the official snow depth numbers together," said Rhett Milne, meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Reno. "Right now, just about all the ski resorts are reporting five to eight feet - and we think that's about on target.

"Kirkwood is reporting the most, with eight to 11 feet."

On the valley floor, Milne said snow accumulated from one to two feet, and the area's overall precipitation reached expectation.

Though the back-to-back-to-back storms began to dwindle by mid-morning Sunday, Milne said expected snow showers will continue through this afternoon.

"It won't be anything like we've been seeing," he said. "But we'll still get four to eight inches (of snow) above 7,000 and two to five inches near Lake Tahoe.

"Some areas down below will pick up an inch or two more - that's about it."

Weather will then "taper back to normal" with another system expected Tuesday evening, Milne said.

"Again, it's going to be a more 'normal' storm," he said. "We're looking with that about eight to 10 more inches in the Sierra and a couple more on the valley floor.

"It could start as rain."

Local law enforcement officials characterized the weekend as busy, but perhaps not as much as they expected.

NHP officials said the only major accident occurred at 10:15 p.m. Saturday near Painted Rock on the north side of Truckee River Canyon near the Interstate 80 (westbound) interchange in Washoe County.

Seventeen cars were involved in the pile-up, but there were no reported injuries, NHP officials said.

"You know, everything went pretty good," said NHP dispatcher Matt Cox. "It was pretty mellow, with the exception of Fernley."

While Northern Nevada troopers were called to mitigate incidents related to the storm, some 18 units were brought up from Las Vegas to help with the flood zone in Fernley.

"We got some guys up here from down south to cover calls in that area," Cox said. "It was a cumulative effort."

Carson City Sheriff's deputies also put in the overtime hours, but one spokesman reported Sunday afternoon that the weekend was not out of the ordinary with activity.

Nevertheless, law enforcement, emergency crews and even meteorologists uniformly reported they'd be looking forward to a few days off after the storm.

And what will they do?

"I'm headed up to check out some of that powder," meteorologist Milne said. "It's gonna be good."


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