First Snow Reported in Sierra Nevada, California

By Victor Westerkamp

Snowfall is reportedly falling on I-80 and the summit of the Sierra Nevada mountains, along the California-Nevada frontier, a week before autumn has officially begun.

Transportation officials posted on their Caltrans District 3 Twitter account footage of snow heaping up at the Interstate 80 and on the Donner summit.  Along Highway 267 and Highway 50, surveillance camera’s also caught a glimpse of the first snow.

Caltrans issued a warning for all traffic in the area to go easy on the gas pedal.

Sierra Nevada, which stands for “Snowy Mountains,” is known for its ski resorts and early season snow-calls, but snowfall this early in the season is exceptional.

The early snow is due to a massive cold weather front that settled itself in the western Nevada area with wind gusts up to 50 mph and a low temperature of 27 degrees at Truckee airport on Sept. 15.

Extreme weather is nothing rare, unfortunately, to the Sierra Nevada area. Earlier this year, in February, The Epoch Times reported on heavy snowfall in the Sierra Nevada area.

California Ski Resorts Close After They Get Too Much Snow

An unbelievable amount of snow dumped by a series of winter storms hitting Northern and Central California since Feb. 1 prompted at least a few ski resorts to close their facilities.

Mammoth Mountain Ski Area, one of the most popular destinations in California, has received 87 to 129 inches of snow from the storms as of Feb. 5, which raised the season’s total snowfall up to 388 inches, according to the resort’s website.

“Heavy snowfall picked up again last night (Feb. 4) dropping another 21″ at Main Lodge and over 36″ at the summit bringing our current storm total to about 7-10 feet,” a statement on the resort’s website reported.

The blizzard caused the resort to close its main lodge and upgrade the town’s chain controls to R3, which requires all vehicles to be chained.

“Snow is extremely deep, be safe and do not ride alone,” the statement continued.

Another ski resort, June Mountain, which is about five miles north of Mammoth Mountain, on Feb.3 recorded a staggering 72 inches of snowfall in 24 hours, according to the National Weather Service.

“We’re absolutely buried and will remain closed for today, Tuesday, February 5th,” said June Mountain on its website. “Since Saturday, we have received over 10ft at the snow plot. Lift, Patrol, Cat, Maintenance, and Snow Removal Crews are hard at work making sure we’re ready for tomorrow.”

Epoch Times reporter Zach Li contributed to this report