New Storm Blankets Sierra

By: James Steiner
By: James Steiner

A winter storm that took its time getting over
the Sierra spilled into the valleys of northern Nevada early
Friday, creating slick driving conditions for morning commuters.
No serious problems were reported, though authorities responded
to numerous spin outs and fender benders.
"By all means slow down," said Nevada Highway Patrol Trooper
Chuck Allen. "The roads are either wet, snow covered or slushy."
Chains or snow tires were required across the region, and a
winter storm warning was posted through Friday night.
Forecasters said valley areas could receive about 3 inches of
snow Friday, with up to 6 inches in the foothills around Reno.
It was a different story in the Sierra, where snow began falling
early Thursday.
Travel in the mountains was slow at best. On Interstate 80,
chains or snow tires were required along a 100 mile stretch, from
Baxter, Calif., to Fernley, 30 miles east of Reno. Tractor trailer
trucks were held at the California-Nevada line because of poor
driving conditions over Donner Summit.
But the nightmare for travelers was a dream come true for
skiers.
"It's fantastic," said Rachel Woods, spokeswoman for Alpine
Meadows ski resort. "This month is going to be incredible
conditions."
As of early Friday, the storm had dumped about 30 inches of snow
at the resort, she said.
Friday's wintry scene was in stark contrast to four days
earlier, when another, warmer storm had northern Nevadans arming
themselves with sand bags as heavy rain and high snow levels
swelled rivers, creeks and ditches with melting snow and runoff.
But water levels receded without flooding when temperatures
dropped Tuesday.
The National Weather Service said another storm was expected to
move into the Sierra and Reno area Sunday night.


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