Large Avalanche on Alpine Meadows Road, CA Buries 2 Cars, Damages Home, Buries Road 5-Feet Deep | 3 People Rescued

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stock image of Alpine Meadows Road and Highway 89 junction.
stock image of Alpine Meadows Road and Highway 89 junction.

A large, natural avalanche came down onto Alpine Meadows Road this morning at 7:50am burying 2 vehicles and damaging one house.  3 people needed to be rescued from their buried cars.  Thankfully, no injuries have been reported.  North Tahoe Fire & Squaw Valley Fire responded to the avalanche and rescued the motorists.

“North Tahoe Fire and Squaw Valley Fire units responded at approximately 7:50 this morning to a reported avalanche in the Alpine Meadows area. One structure was damaged and 2 vehicles were involved, three people were quickly rescued, no injuries have been reported. Emergency units remain on scene, the area is currently secured. We are in a high-avalanche period and people are asked to remain out of the area. Alpine Meadows Road may be closed for an extended period of time. Residents in the area should avoid unnecessary travel.” – North Tahoe Fire, today

The avalanche buried Alpine Meadows Road 5-feet deep in snow.

Many avalanches have been observed by Squaw Valley Ski Patrol and others this morning.


(map showing approximate location of avalanche today)

The Squaw Valley Fire Department is recommending that you stay indoors if you’re in Squaw Valley.  If you’re on Alpine Meadows Road, you should certainly stay inside.

“The new snow has created a very high to extreme level of avalanche risk in avalanche-prone areas. Alpine Meadows Road was hit with a natural slide this morning that deposited five feet of snow on the road, hit a bus and homes.

If you are in the high risk avalanche area in Squaw Valley, we strongly recommend avoiding outdoor activity in exposed areas. Squaw Valley Ski Patrol has seen considerable avalanche activity in areas with similar exposure to the Sandy Way avalanche path and the slide on Alpine Meadows Road mimics the conditions above Sandy Way.” – Squaw Valley Fire Department

Alpine Meadows and Squaw Valley ski resorts in Lake Tahoe are both currently closed due to the severity of the current storm as of noon.  Squaw has announced that Alpine will not open today due to avalanche danger.  Squaw may open today but only Squaw Creek, Red Dog, Far East are scheduled for 1:30pm today.  No KT-22 today.

Squaw saw wind gusts as high as 123mph last night and Alpine saw a gust of 104mph at 10am today.

104mph wind gust at Alpine Meadows at 10am today. image: noaa, today
104mph wind gust at Alpine Meadows at 10am today. image: noaa, today

Squaw has seen 20″ of snow so far today and Alpine had gotten 14″.

“Observers reported large natural avalanches that hit the Alpine Meadows Road. No injuries were reported. These avalanches occurred around 7:15 this morning and no other details are available yet. The location is approximate and not confirmed.” – Sierra Avalanche Center, today

Squaw today. photo: squaw
Squaw today. photo: squaw

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