Wet weather swells Valley streams
Heavy rains started mudslides along Foothill Road south of Genoa on Wednesday as a warmer winter storm brought rain to Carson Valley.
Rain on snow in the Carson Range sent torrents of water down small streams and drainages along the mountains’ base.
State and county officials responded to two slides on Foothill, one across from David Walley’s 1862 Hot Springs and another near the Jubilee Ranch.
Water was reported flowing over the roadway closing Nye Drive in the Pine Nut foothills above Johnson Lane.
As of Wednesday morning, both forks of the Carson River were still running around average for this time of year, but high snow levels could change that.
Carson Valley residents experienced a brief power outage around 11 a.m. Wednesday. NV Energy reported that 76 customers in Glenbrook were affected by a longer outage that was expected to be repaired by 2:15 p.m.
A flood advisory was issued by the National Weather Service for Douglas County on Wednesday afternoon.
Minor flooding was reported in Carson Valley due to heavy rain and blocked drains.
Forecasters predicted that additional heavy rain on Wednesday afternoon could cause small creeks and streams to rise, with additional heavy rain today before snow levels drop back to the Valley floor.
Douglas County emergency managers are monitoring the weather on Wednesday, East Fork Deputy Fire Chief Dave Fogerson said.
He said they received a presentation by meteorologist Chris Smallcomb on Tuesday about the coming weather.
“They are not predicting any burn scar or river flooding but are worried about areas where the storm drains are covered by snow so the water doesn’t drain away,” he said.
East Fork Fire Protection District provides the county’s emergency management.
Fogerson said the district has discussed the impending weather with county and town leadership.
“They said they would look at the drainage issues,” he said. “We have the sandbag sites available as needed.”
Snow levels in the forecast were described as chaotic, starting at 4,000 feet Tuesday and then rising as warm air arrives in the Valley.
Snow levels are expected to be at 6,500-8,000 feet by Wednesday afternoon with Sierra cement predicted above 7,000-8,000 feet.
High winds are forecast for Thursday with gusts of 40-55 mph with 70 mph possible along the Sierra Front.
“This has been one of the most chaotic forecasts of my career with many adjustments and changes made to the existing forecast,” National Weather Service meteorologist Marvin Boyd said Tuesday.
“Basically this is weather’s version of dogs and cats living together. All said and done, a strong winter storm will be affecting the region in one capacity or another.”
With another storm expected this week, the Nevada Highway Patrol is reminding motorists to pay attention to road and weather conditions, Trooper Matt McLaughlin said.
“Not only does this apply to watching weather reports, but watching for road closures, signage and chain restrictions,” he said. “As we saw with this last storm, first responders may not be able to respond when the roads become impassable. Tow companies were unable to respond to stranded motorists and could not remove vehicles until the following day.”
Minden weather watcher Stan Kapler reported that 17.5 inches fell in the Douglas County seat since the beginning of February. He said 1.81 inches of precipitation has fallen so far this month.
New records for single-day snowfall were set for Feb. 5 and for Feb. 10, and for February through Feb. 10. The record for most snow in February was 28 inches set in 1909. Records have been kept in Minden since 1906.
Topaz Ranch Estates received just over a foot of snow from Sunday’s storm while Genoa received about a foot.