Winter weather advisory in effect tonight; larger storm looms
A winter weather advisory will go into effect tonight at 8 p.m. for the Truckee-Tahoe area, and will last until 4 p.m. tomorrow.
The National Weather Service office in Reno has forecast 2 to 4 inches of snow for the area and 5 to 8 inches of snow at elevations above 7,000 feet, “particularly on the West Shore,” said Meteorologist Scott McGuire.
Winds are also forecast to reach speeds of 25 to 40 mph in the Tahoe Basin and up to 60 mph along ridgelines.
“It’s dropping down over the Western U.S. It doesn’t have a lot of moisture associated with it and it’s pretty quick moving,” said McGuire. “It’ll certainly have its winter driving impacts tonight and into tomorrow.”
Cold weather with high temperatures in the 30s is expected through the weekend followed by a possible larger storm, which could roll in as early as Sunday morning.
“It’s certainly the biggest snowfall producer that we’ve had this season the way things are looking at this point,” added McGuire.
Sunday’s storm is forecast to drop snow on valley floors in Western Nevada and will have a longer duration compared to the late October atmospheric event.
“They’re very different systems,” said McGuire. “The system in October, the atmospheric river event, was historical as far as rainfall, but the snow was primarily confined to the higher elevations. This one’s going to be a lot more of a prototypical, strong winter storm.”
Next week’s storm, which is dropping down from the North Pacific and will bring cold weather from the Gulf of Alaska, could drop a couple of feet of snow at lake level, according to McGuire. Elevations above 7,000 feet could see 3 to 4 feet of snow, and up to 5 feet of snow is forecast for elevations above 8,000 feet.
Early forecasts indicated the storm would hit Monday, but, according to McGuire, the latest models have shown it speeding up with the possibility of impacting the region Sunday morning. With the storm being five days out, however, McGuire stressed much could change before the system comes in.
“Stay tuned to the weather forecast and be prepared for winter driving conditions up in the Sierra starting this evening through tomorrow for the system coming in, and then certainly Sunday through the earlier part of next week,” he said. “It could be quite impactful to travel.”
Justin Scacco is a staff writer with the Sierra Sun. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
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