Sierra storms to complicate holiday travel | RecordCourier.com

Sierra storms to complicate holiday travel

Staff Reports

A series of winter storms will bring high winds and the chance of snow to the valleys starting Friday and into Sunday, according to a statement issued by the National Weather Service.

While none of the storms are expected to be strong, they will be cold with snow affecting the Sierra passes as early as Saturday afternoon, complicating holiday travel through the mountains.

Any snowfall on the Valley floor would arrive sometime Sunday.

"There should be enough snow to create travel headaches starting around midday Saturday in northeast California, spreading into the northern and central Sierra late Saturday afternoon and evening and Western Nevada late Saturday night," forecasters said. "Icy conditions along with chain controls and travel delays are possible over the passes into Sunday afternoon. Conditions will begin to improve Sunday night."

The wind is expected to pick up early this morning, with 40 mph gusts arriving shortly after noon. The forecast calls for mostly sunny skies and a high of 54 degrees. As the storm rolls in, 1-2 inches of snow could fall in Carson Valley overnight on Saturday.

While only a few flurries fell in Carson Valley from this week's snow storms, portions close to the Sierra saw more than an inch of rain. Minden reported .22 inches of rain from the weekend's storms, about a third of average for this time in November.

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According to Ski Lake Tahoe, Heavenly received 20 inches of snow from the storm, with Mount Rose receiving 32-52 inches.

Heavenly opened on Wednesday with a base depth of 18 inches.

Kirkwood moved its opening to Friday with an 18-inch base.

The storms allowed several more downhill ski resorts to open by Thanksgiving.

Mt. Rose and Boreal opened to kick off the season last week