Poor Sierra snowpack forces closure of Tahoe Donner Cross Country | SierraSun.com

Poor Sierra snowpack forces closure of Tahoe Donner Cross Country

Staff report

TRUCKEE, Calif. — The lack of snow this winter in the Sierra has claimed its first victim.

Tahoe Donner Cross Country Ski Area will temporarily close starting today, the resort’s manager said.

“We regret to inform you after doing our best to keep trails open for skiing and snowshoeing, the … ski area will be closing today … due to limited snow and icy conditions,” Tahoe Donner’s Sally Jones said in a Monday afternoon statement. “When more snowpack allows, the facility will reopen and all programs, clinics and events will resume as scheduled.”

Skiers can visit tahoedonner.com/cross-country or call 530-587-9484 to stay up to date on conditions.

It’s been a dry winter so far in 2014-15 for Tahoe standards; outside of a couple wet — but underwhelming, in terms of snowfall — storms before Christmas, sunny skies and high temperatures in the 40s and 50s have been the norm for much of 2015.

According to the National Weather Service, the extended forecast shows the same conditions and temperatures heading into February, and it’s unclear beyond Feb. 1 what’s in store.

In late December, a monthly snowpack survey at Phillips Station near Sierra-At-Tahoe resort off the lake’s South Shore revealed a snow depth of 21.3 inches and 4 inches of water content, roughly 33 percent the long-term average.

Unless things change, it will mark the fourth-consecutive poor winter for the Truckee-Tahoe region.

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