Winter storm warning issued for Lake Tahoe; 4 feet of snow possible in high country
February 8, 2019
The National Weather Service in Reno has issued a winter storm warning for the Lake Tahoe region from 4 p.m. Friday to 10 p.m. Sunday.
The heaviest snow is expected Friday night and Saturday afternoon to Sunday morning. Lake level could see 1-2 feet with the heaviest snow falling west of California Route 89.
Snow totals above 7,000 feet could range from 2 to 4 feet.
Strong winds could cause additional complications on mountain passes. Winds could be as strong as 45 mph. Gusts over Sierra ridges could exceed 95 mph.
"Avoid travel if possible, you could be stuck in your vehicle for many hours," the weather service warns. "If you must travel, prepare for long delays and carry an emergency kit with extra food, water and clothing. If you stay home, have a backup plan in case of power outages."
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The California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) issued a similar warning, saying drivers should anticipate the implementation of chain controls over mountain passes. Speed limits during chain controls are reduced to 30 mph on Interstate 80 and 25 mph on U.S. 50.
"Caltrans reminds drivers to check that tires are properly inflated and have a good tread, and to stock vehicles with water, blankets, snacks, a flashlight and a full tank of gas before mountain travel."
An avalanche warning has also been issued by the Sierra Avalanche Center for the Central Sierra Nevada, including the Tahoe Basin, from 7 a.m. Saturday to 7 a.m. Monday.
The Tahoe Daily Tribune is a sister publication of the Sierra Sun.