Weather

Dusting of snow in Sierra overnight as summer weather cools

A light dusting of Sierra snow at Kirkwood
A light dusting of Sierra snow at Kirkwood Kirkwood ski resort

Don’t break out the toboggan just yet, but a little bit of snow fell overnight at the highest elevations of the Sierra Nevada.

The same weather system is also keeping Sacramento temperatures in the 70s and offers a chance of rain at lower Sierra elevations, said Brooke Bingaman, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service. Sacramento reached a high of 73 degrees Monday.

“This is the first time things are starting to feel like fall,” Bingaman said. “Tuolumne County would be the best best (for snow.)”

She said the chance of snow is limited to the highest elevations (above 9,000 feet). Kirkwood ski resort, with elevations ranging from 7,800 feet to 9,800 feet, had received a dusting of snow on rooftops at daybreak. The resort webcam showed flakes still coming down around 6:30 a.m. Tuesday.

Bingaman said a light early snow is not unusual. What would be unusual would be more significant snowfall at lower elevations.

Bingaman cautioned that the weather event might also bring lightening strikes, which raise the risk of wildfire.

Forecast

The detailed, 7-day forecast from the NWS for Blue Canyon, along Interstate 80 in the Sierra:

Tuesday: Scattered showers and thunderstorms, mainly before 11am. Partly sunny, with a high near 60. Calm wind becoming west southwest 5 to 8 mph in the afternoon. Chance of precipitation is 50%. New rainfall amounts of less than a tenth of an inch, except higher amounts possible in thunderstorms.

Tonight: Mostly clear, with a low around 46. West southwest wind 5 to 7 mph becoming calm in the evening.

Wednesday: Sunny, with a high near 68. Calm wind becoming west 5 to 8 mph in the afternoon.

Wednesday night: Mostly clear, with a low around 53. West northwest wind around 7 mph becoming northeast in the evening.

Thursday: Sunny, with a high near 73. East northeast wind around 6 mph becoming south southwest in the morning.

Thursday night: Mostly clear, with a low around 58.

Friday: Sunny, with a high near 76.

Friday night: Mostly clear, with a low around 61.

Saturday: Sunny, with a high near 78.

Saturday night: Mostly clear, with a low around 61.

Sunday: Sunny, with a high near 78.

Sunday night: Mostly clear, with a low around 61.

Monday: Sunny, with a high near 78.

Ed Fletcher: 916-321-1269, @NewsFletch

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