Winter Weather Advisory issued for Lake Tahoe

A storm moving in Thursday afternoon is expected to drop over a foot of snow and could affect the evening commute and also holiday weekend travel.

The National Weather Service in Reno on Thursday morning issued a Winter Weather Advisory that goes into effect at 4 p.m. and lasts through 4 a.m. Friday.

The service expects anywhere from 0 to 4 inches of snow at lake level, 6 to 12 inches north of U.S. Highway 50 and 6 to 18 inches above 7,000 feet south of U.S. 50.

A view from Pope Beach looking at Heavenly Mountain Resort in South Lake Tahoe. <em id="emphasis-4ff1fe5315b147be38811e1f0b70ce83">Bill Rozak / Tahoe Daily Tribune</em>

Wind gusts over Sierra ridges could reach triple digits with lower elevation gusts around 25 to 35 mph. The wind will make lake conditions rough and choppy with waves reaching up to 4 feet, and those conditions will likely last through much of the holiday weekend, officials said.

Gusty winds could also bring down tree branches and relocate empty garbage cans left outside.

Officials advise that even light snowfall can cause major travel delays, especially during periods of high traffic volume. Leave extra space between cars and allow for extra time to reach intended destinations.

A second, colder, storm is right behind and expected to impact the basin Saturday into Sunday. The storm will bring another round of gusty winds and better chances for snow at all levels, although it will be measured in inches, around 3, at lake level.

A third storm arrives Monday morning, Presidents Day. at possibly the worst time for travelers leaving Tahoe. The service has not issued snowfall expectations, but says that even a few inches will impact travel in the Sierra.

The service has issued preferred travel times for travelers, including Friday afternoon and evening and Sunday through early Monday morning.

The latest road conditions can be obtained by calling 5-1-1. For chain controls, visit

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