Mono County advises residents to prepare for coming winter

While next week's weather picture is still developing, it's possible more snow may be coming to the Sierra Nevada.

While next week's weather picture is still developing, it's possible more snow may be coming to the Sierra Nevada.
Tim Berube | Special to The R-C

In preparation for last week’s storm, Monitor, Ebbetts, Sonora and Tioga passes were all closed for the first time in months.

Three of the four passes were opened Thursday and Friday, according to the California Department of Transportation, but the possibility that they will close again depends on a forecast that calls for the possibility of 2 feet of snow above 7,000 feet south of Ebbetts Pass between Wednesday and Friday.

Highway 108 over Sonora Pass was reopened 1 p.m. Thursday and Ebbetts Pass reopened 8 a.m. Friday, according to CalTrans. Monitor Pass is also open.

A story appearing in today’s edition of The Record-Courier contained obsolete information.

Highway 120 to the eastern entrance of Yosemite National Park remains closed this morning, according to the department.

Last year Ebbetts, Sonora and Tioga passes were all closed Nov. 17-18, with Monitor remaining open until Dec. 8.

Highway 395 through Mono County was closed last winter for most of the time between Feb. 5 and April 7 due to avalanches.

Even as last week’s storm was leaving the region on Tuesday, Mono County Office of Emergency Management Director Chris Mokracek provided a “Winter 2023 Response and Winter 2024 Preparedness” presentation to Mono County supervisors.

The presentation outlined areas for emergency response improvement based on feedback received from a recent community survey and highlighted the importance of adequate and thorough planning in advance of this winter storm season.

Mokracek encouraged all Mono County residents and visitors to take the time to prepare for the upcoming winter season by visiting

Residents are encouraged to sign up for the AFN Registry, and to ensure that their friends and neighbors with special needs are registered.


1. Get Alerts

Mono County utilizes a cloud-based, public alerting and residential safety tool that allows government agencies to send geo-targeted urgent alerts to subscribers. Residents and visitors are urged to sign up for alerts at Subscribers are encouraged to update their profile annually.

2. Make a Plan

Extreme weather events and other natural disasters occur at a moment’s notice. Mono County urges residents and visitors to “Make a Plan” in advance of potential emergency situations. This plan should include being prepared for evacuation, extended periods of time without power/electricity, unplowed streets, road closures, etc.

3. Pack a Go Bag

Most disasters are unexpected and happen fast. Pack a “Go Bag” to be prepared to leave your home in a hurry. Be sure to pack items for each member of your household. Items to consider include:

• Important documents

• Cash

• Maps

• Medication

• Water

• Non-perishable food or snacks

• Portable radio

• Flashlight

• First Aid Kit

4. Build a Stay Box

In some disasters, you may be safer staying at home. However, damage from the disaster, or extended periods of isolation might make that uncomfortable. You may not have access to drinking water, bathing water, or the ability to flush your toilet. Electricity may be out, impacting your ability to keep perishable food fresh, or your home heated. Prepare for at least 7-10 days without power or electricity. Items to consider include:

• Water: Up to 3 gallons per person

• Food: Set aside foods that won’t spoil and require no cooking

• Portable radio

• Flashlight

• First Aid Kit

5. Help Friends and Neighbors

Meet with your neighbors and friends to discuss your plan, and identify any areas of need/support in your community. Make sure to have contact information for each other, and check-in during winter storm events.


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