The Latest: New storm warnings, advisories for Reno-Tahoe
RENO, Nev. (AP) — The Latest on the series of winter storms bringing heavy snowfall to the Sierra and Lake Tahoe (all times local):
The National Weather Service has issued additional winter storm warnings and advisories for the Reno-Tahoe area into the weekend as a series of storms continue to make their way into the Sierra Nevada.
A winter storm warning expires at 4 a.m. Friday for the Lake Tahoe area where more than a foot (30 centimeters) of snow already has fallen at area ski resorts. But the service late Thursday issued another one effective from 11 p.m. Friday through 3 p.m. Saturday with more than another foot of snow (30 cm) in the forecast.
A winter weather advisory goes into effect Saturday from 4 a.m. to noon for Reno, Sparks, Carson City and surrounding areas where up to 2 inches (5 cm) is expected on the valley floors and up to 4 inches (10 cm) in the foothills.
New winter storm warnings also were issued for Lassen and eastern Plumas and Sierra counties in California north of Reno from 11 p.m. Friday to 3 p.m. Saturday where up to 10 inches (25 cm) of new snow is possible.
A winter storm warning will be replaced with a winter advisory at 4 a.m. Friday through 3 p.m. Saturday in the central Sierra where more than 2 feet (61 cm) of snow already has fallen on the ridgetops.
The National Weather Service has issued a backcountry avalanche warning for most of the central Sierra, including the Lake Tahoe area.
The warning went into effect Thursday morning and runs through 7 a.m. Friday.
More than a foot of snow (30 centimeters) has fallen at Tahoe-area ski resorts and as much as 30 inches (76 cm) at the top of Mammoth Mountain about 120 miles (193 kilometers) south of the lake.
The service in Reno says that the forecast for heavy snow into the weekend combined with high winds may result in widespread avalanches.
The Nevada Department of Transportation briefly closed part of the Mount Rose Highway connecting Reno to Lake Tahoe Thursday morning for avalanche control operations. Officials say they planned to shoot 30 sticks of dynamite into the mountainside with a remote-controlled air cannon to trigger small avalanches.
NDOT spokeswoman Meg Ragonese says they may have to do additional avalanche control later Thursday depending on how much snow falls.
More than a foot (30 centimeters) of snow has fallen at some ski resorts around Lake Tahoe.
The National Weather Service in Reno reported more than 2 feet (61 cm) of snow was recorded on the ridgetops early Thursday in the southern Sierra south of the mountain lake where as much as 5 feet (1.5 meters) is possible by the weekend.
The first of a series of storms moving into the Sierra dropped 14 inches (35 cm) at the Mt. Rose Ski Resort between Reno and Tahoe early Thursday, 13 inches (33 cm) at Northstar near Truckee, California and 19 to 30 inches (43 to 76 cm) at parts of Mammoth Mountain 120 miles (193 kilometers) south of the lake along the Nevada-California line.
A half-foot (15 cm) or more of snow was reported at a number of other Tahoe-area resorts, including Squaw Valley near Tahoe City, California and Heavenly Ski Resort at south Lake Tahoe.
Authorities say northern Nevada highways are wet and slick due to rain and snow from a storm that caused scattered school closures and delays.
The National Weather Service said 8.5 inches (22 centimeters) of snow had fallen at Incline Village on Lake Tahoe’s eastern shore by midday Thursday and that moderate to heavy snow would continue through the day.
A winter storm warning was issued through 4 a.m. Friday, followed by a winter storm watch Friday evening through Saturday evening due to an expected second storm.
Wind gusts over 70 mph (113 kph) were forecast in exposed higher terrain.
The Nevada Highway Patrol said chain restrictions were required in some areas, and forecasters urged drivers in the high country to avoid travel if possible.