Weekend keeps roads busy
While promised winter storms didn’t come to pass until after the weekend, it was still a healthy holiday weekend for local merchants.
“It’s a full weekend, we’ve been full ever since Saturday,” said Laura Ryan, general manager of the Best Western Tahoe-Truckee Inn. “This is a big week too because the kids in San Francisco are out.”
Merchants and ski resorts reported steady but not record-breaking activity, possibly because weather reports continued to call for major storms that didn’t actually happen last weekend.
On local highways, the flow of visitors leaving the area Monday caused major gridlock, but despite the inconvenience, no major accidents were reported.
“We did have a few traffic collisions but for the most part it was pretty smooth,” said California Highway Patrol Public Affairs Spokesman Todd Kettwig. “A lot of people traveled very slow because of the intermittent rain and snow over the summit.”
Interstate 80 was completely gridlocked Monday, and traffic controls were also in effect on Donner Pass Road, Highway 89 and other main thoroughfares.
“It’s going to be the same thing when you have people leave all the resorts at the same time and Reno at the same time,” Kettwig said.
Kettwig advised motorists to plan ahead if they’re traveling at the end of a holiday weekend.
“Be patient and allow plenty of time,” advised Kettwig. “The highways just aren’t able to handle that amount of traffic.”
“It was a tremendous weekend,” said Diamond Peak ski resort marketing director Corie Ewers. “We’re very, very pleased and impressed with the turnout.”
Diamond Peak attendance was over 1,100 on Friday, and peaked at over 3,500 Saturday.
“It was probably about as busy as last year,” she said.
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Winds and cooler weather will continue through the weekend, with temperatures starting to warm up next week, the National Weather Service said.