Operations Update: February 2

Category: Operations Blog

Today's Overview, February 2, 2017

Today high winds are here to accompany the storm and will likely affect operations. With wind gusts over 70mph, upper mountain lifts at both Squaw Valley and Alpine Meadows are on wind hold or wind closure. Check out NOAA's wind sensors:

Check our lift status page or app for real-time updates throughout the day.

The Incoming Storm

Here is the most recent weather update from resident weather blogger, BA. Updated at 5:46am on February 1, 2017:

Light Snow

Early Thursday morning the next storm moves in. Only expecting light to moderate precip Thursday. Snow levels start near the base and could rise to 7000 feet during the day. We could see a coating to an inch at the base before the change to rain, and 1-5 inches on the mountain.

Heavier Snow

We may see a break in the precip Thursday night and then heavier precip Friday as a front moves through. Snow showers could continue into Friday night. Snow levels start around 7000 feet Friday and could fall to the base by Friday evening. We could see an additional 2-4 inches at the base by Saturday morning, and 10-22 inches on the mountain. Mountain top gusts near 80 mph. Thursday and Friday.

-BA

NOAA Winter Storm Warning

NOAA has issued a Winter Storm Warning from 1am Thursday to 4am Saturday above 6,500 feet (updated 3:13pm on February 1):

  • "TIMING: Snow will move into the Sierra late tonight...becoming moderate to heavy Thursday Morning. Snow is expected to decrease substantially in intensity Thursday afternoon and evening before becoming moderate to heavy again for late Thursday night through Friday.
  • SNOW ACCUMULATIONS: 1 to 3 feet above 7000 feet...highest along the Sierra Crest...with 6 to 12 inches from 6500 to 7000 feet and up to 6 inches down to lake level.  
  • WINDS: South to Southwest 10 to 20 with gusts to 45 mph. Ridge gusts up to 90mph.  
  • SNOW LEVELS: Rising from 6000 feet tonight to around 7000 feet Thursday afternoon. Snow levels will fall to around 6500 feet Friday, then to lake level Friday Night.
  • IMPACTS: Travel will become difficult due to snow covered roads and low visibility across the Sierra Passes...especially Thursday morning to early afternoon and again late Thursday night and Friday."

Operations for Tomorrow, February 3, 2017

According to NOAA Weather Discussion, "ridges will gust up to 100 mph with the strongest gusts expected Friday and Friday night." With this forecast in mind, wind holds on upper mountain at both Squaw Valley and Alpine Meadows are possible tomorrow. Our operations crews will assess conditions in the morning, so please check our app and lift status page for updates.