NOAA has been following a Gulf of Alaska Storm system headed to California via one of two possible tracks: a colder, drier, more likely, overland track & a wetter, less likely, oversea track. Yesterday, they were giving the wetter track only a 20% chance.
Today, they’re going with the previously less likely, wetter track saying that the Lake Tahoe region will see 6-24″ of snow Tuesday – Thursday. They’re calling for very cold temperatures, snow levels down to 2,000-feet and snow ratios as high as 20 to 1…
A VERY STRONG COLD FRONT WILL SWEEP SOUTH DURING THE DAY TUESDAY AND USHER IN MUCH COLDER AIR ALONG WITH PERIODS OF SNOW. - NOAA Reno, NV today
NOAA is now forecasting 6-24″ of snow for Lake Tahoe with over a foot on the highest peaks.
PRELIMINARY QPF IN THE SIERRA RANGE 0.5-0.8 INCHES OVER 48 HOURS. THIS CORRELATES TO TOTALS AROUND 6 INCHES DOWN TO LAKE TAHOE, 12 INCHES FOR THE HIGHER SIERRA ABOVE 7000 FT, AND 1-2 FEET ALONG THE HIGHEST ELEVATIONS ON THE SIERRA CREST. - NOAA Reno, NV today
NOAA is calling for snowfall ratios as high as 20 to 1. This means that for every inch of liquid precipitation that falls on Tahoe we get 20 inches of snow. That’s huge since we generally get snow ratios of around 12 to 1.
WITH THE MUCH COLDER TEMPERATURES,SNOW RATIOS WILL BE ON THE HIGHER END - RATIOS OF 15:1 OR AS HIGH AS 20:1. - NOAA Reno, NV today
There are 12 ski resorts open in California right now (& 1 in Lake Tahoe, NV). The resorts further north (higher on this list) have a strong chance of seeing deep, blower powder this week.
- Sugar Bowl (will open on Thursday)
- Squaw Valley
- Alpine Meadows
- Mt. Rose, NV
- Mountain High
- Snow Summit
- Big Bear
Check this model animation to get an estimate for when precipitation is expected to reach your area.
Posted by US National Weather Service Sacramento California on Sunday, November 22, 2015
(video forecast of when the storm will arrive in California on Tuesday)
SPECIAL WEATHER STATEMENT for CALIFORNIA:
SPECIAL WEATHER STATEMENT NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE RENO NV 319 AM PST SUN NOV 22 2015 SURPRISE VALLEY CALIFORNIA-LASSEN-EASTERN PLUMAS- EASTERN SIERRA COUNTIES-GREATER LAKE TAHOE AREA-MONO- MINERAL AND SOUTHERN LYON COUNTIES-GREATER RENO-CARSON CITY- MINDEN AREA-WESTERN NEVADA BASIN AND RANGE INCLUDING PYRAMID LAKE- NORTHERN WASHOE COUNTY- INCLUDING THE CITIES OF...CEDARVILLE...EAGLEVILLE... FORT BIDWELL...PORTOLA...SUSANVILLE...WESTWOOD...SIERRAVILLE... LOYALTON...SOUTH LAKE TAHOE...TAHOE CITY...TRUCKEE... MARKLEEVILLE...BRIDGEPORT...COLEVILLE...LEE VINING... MAMMOTH LAKES...HAWTHORNE...YERINGTON...SMITH VALLEY...MINA... SCHURZ...GLENBROOK...INCLINE VILLAGE...SPARKS...VERDI... GARDNERVILLE...VIRGINIA CITY...FERNLEY...FALLON...LOVELOCK... SILVER SPRINGS...NIXON...IMLAY...EMPIRE...GERLACH ...TRAVEL IMPACTS LIKELY FOR THE UPCOMING HOLIDAY... A STRONG WINTER STORM WILL DROP SOUTH SOUTHEAST INTO EASTERN CALIFORNIA AND WESTERN NEVADA TUESDAY THEN LINGER THROUGH THE REMAINDER OF THE WEEK. EARLY TUESDAY STRONG GUSTY WINDS COULD CREATE SIGNIFICANT TURBULENCE FOR ANYONE FLYING IN FOR THE THANKSGIVING HOLIDAY. STRONG CROSS WINDS OF UP TO 50 MPH ARE ALSO POSSIBLE ON NORTH TO SOUTH ORIENTED ROADS MAKING TRAVEL HAZARDOUS FOR HIGH PROFILE VEHICLES. A VERY STRONG COLD FRONT WILL SWEEP SOUTH DURING THE DAY TUESDAY AND USHER IN MUCH COLDER AIR ALONG WITH PERIODS OF SNOW. THERE ARE STILL SOME UNCERTAINTIES REGARDING THE AMOUNT OF SNOW THE REGION WILL RECEIVE...BUT GUSTY WINDS MAY COMBINE WITH EVEN LIGHT AMOUNTS OF SNOW TO CREATE HOLIDAY TRAVEL IMPACTS WITH THIS STORM. IN THE HIGHER ELEVATIONS OF THE SIERRA ONE FOOT OR MORE IS POSSIBLE FROM TUESDAY THROUGH LATE WEDNESDAY. IN THE SIERRA VALLEYS UP TO 6 INCHES IS POSSIBLE. IN THE LOWER VALLEYS OF NORTHEAST CALIFORNIA AND WESTERN NEVADA UP TO 3 INCHES OF SNOW IS POSSIBLE. THESE AMOUNTS COULD RISE IF THE STORM SYSTEM STAYS OVER THE WATERS OF THE EASTERN PACIFIC A LITTLE LONGER. MUCH COLDER AIR SETTLES OVER THE REGION FROM TUESDAY NIGHT INTO FRIDAY. HIGHS WILL BE AS MUCH AS 15 DEGREES BELOW NORMAL...REACHING ONLY THE 20S IN THE SIERRA VALLEYS AND LOWER TO MID 30S IN WESTERN NEVADA AND NORTHEAST CALIFORNIA. THIS WILL THE BE COLDEST AIR THUS FAR THIS SEASON AND PREPARATIONS SHOULD BE MADE EARLY TO AVOID COLD RELATED PROBLEMS. AS MENTIONED...THERE ARE SOME UNCERTAINTIES WITH THE EXACT TRACK OF THE STORM AND THIS WILL AFFECT SNOW TOTALS. CHECK BACK FREQUENTLY FOR UPDATES TO FORECAST SNOW TOTALS ALONG WITH MORE INFORMATION ON THE WINDS AHEAD OF THE STORMS AND THE COLD TEMPERATURES LATER IN THE WEEK.