Flood and wind warnings issued this week in Sacramento as snow keeps blasting Sierra

A picnic might not be the best way to celebrate Valentine’s Day this week.

While snow continues to burden mountain travelers, the National Weather Service has issued a flood warning across a large portion of Northern California, including Sacramento and most of the Sacramento Valley, effective from 4 a.m. Wednesday through 4 p.m. Thursday in response to moderate and heavy rainfall in the forecast.

NWS warns that between 1 and 2 inches will fall in the Central Valley, 2 to 4 inches in the foothills and as much as 7 inches in eastern Butte County.

A wind advisory is also in effect from 4 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Wednesday, with winds up to 30 mph and gusts up to 50 mph possible in Sacramento, Chico, Marysville/Yuba City, Orovile, Stockton, Modesto and nearby areas. NWS warns drivers to anticipated downed tree branches and hazardous driving conditions. Power outages are possible as well.

All of this coincides with a winter storm that will again blanket the Sierra. With it already snowing lightly Tuesday morning, NWS warns snow levels will rise “considerably” by Wednesday, beginning at elevations of 3,000 feet and rising to 5,000 or 6,000 feet by afternoon. Snowfall will continue through Thursday evening.

Tuesday afternoon might be the last stretch of clear skies in Sacramento for the week. Rain or a chance of showers are in the forecast for Sacramento Tuesday night through at least Saturday, with high temperatures in the mid 50s.

Snow was heavy enough in Tahoe that ski resort Squaw Valley Alpine Meadows needed 18-wheelers to haul loads of it away. The resort said it got 52 inches of new snow in a 48-hour window.

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Michael McGough anchors The Sacramento Bee’s breaking news reporting team, covering public safety and other local stories. A Sacramento native and lifelong capital resident, he interned at The Bee while attending Sacramento State, where he earned a degree in journalism.