“Dangerous to impossible” travel is expected in the Sierra Nevada as another winter storm blows through the mountains on Saturday, according to the National Weather Service.
The weather service also said it expects a streak of heavy rain as the front makes its way down the corridor of Highway 80.
“Right now it looks like really heavy snow,” said National Weather Service meteorologist Eric Kurth. “With that heavier band of showers and thunderstorms – the remnants of that rising up there – things could get even heavier.”
The UC Berkeley Central Sierra Snow Lab, located at an elevation of 6,894 feet in Soda Springs, California, said it received 21.3 inches of snow in a 24-hour period starting at 8:50 am
There were already 10 feet of snow on the ground, the lab said, and another 2 to 3 feet are expected by Monday morning.
“Dangerous to impossible travel in the Sierra expected as a line of heavy storms will move in the next few hours,” the weather service tweeted at 11:20 am Saturday. “Heavy snowfall rates of 2 to 4” with zero visibility and wind gusts will create impassable roads and bleaching conditions. Travel is HIGHLY DISCOURAGED!”
Several detours caused traffic to be held up at several locations uphill towards Lake Tahoe on Interstate 80 eastbound starting at Drum Road, according to Caltrans.
Traffic was stopped at Donner Summit, Caltrans said in a post on twitter.
The highway was closed westbound at the state line and eastbound at Colfax due to skids, high winds and dark driving conditions, according to the California Highway Patrol.
Traffic was held up eastbound on the highway about two miles east of Baxter due to detours, the CHP said. The route is closed at Colfax to avoid a traffic jam on the way up.
Caltrans said traffic is also being held up on Highway 50 between Echo Summit and Meyers due to multiple detours.
Highway 49 is closed about four miles north of the Nevada/Yuba county line at Marysville Road to Sattley in Sierra County due to heavy snow, Caltrans said.
Highway 20 is closed between Nevada Street and the I-80 junction due to road ice.
There is no estimated time to reopen any of these roads.
Visit https://quickmap.dot.ca.gov for the latest road and traffic information.
This story was originally published January 14, 2023 11:55 am.
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