Another storm on the way to Tahoe, forecast shows. Here’s when — and snow totals so far

The Tahoe region has undergone several winter storms lately — filled with rain, snow and high wind gusts — and it hasn’t seen the end of it.

Another storm is on the way, the latest National Weather Service’s forecast shows.

Exact details on specific amounts of snow, timing and location are still unclear, the weather service said. However, moderate impacts are expected over the weekend.

Along with widespread precipitation later this week, some gusty winds are expected to sweep through Northern California.

“Our confidence on how strong those winds may be is still low, but probabilities are 30-60% for seeing at least 25 mph across much of northern CA,” the weather service wrote on X, formerly known as Twitter.

Over the past few days, the Sierra Nevada experienced a “drier period” and warmer temperatures, according to the UC Berkeley Central Sierra Snow Laboratory’s last snow update. From Wednesday to Thursday, Tahoe last received approximately 5 inches of snow.

The laboratory, located at Donner Pass, reported no new snowfall since Thursday.

How much snow has fallen at Tahoe’s ski resorts?

A snowboarder pops off a rail at a Palisades Tahoe terrain park on Thursday, Dec. 21, 2023. Many Tahoe-area ski resorts have limited runs open due to a lack of snowfall and warmer temperatures. Hector Amezcua/hamezcua@sacbee.com
A snowboarder pops off a rail at a Palisades Tahoe terrain park on Thursday, Dec. 21, 2023. Many Tahoe-area ski resorts have limited runs open due to a lack of snowfall and warmer temperatures. Hector Amezcua/hamezcua@sacbee.com

In the past week, the Central Sierra laboratory reported about 16 inches of snow.

As of Monday, here’s how much snow has fallen at ski and snowboarding resorts in Tahoe so far this season, according to their websites:

Sugar Bowl Ski Resort: 168 to 217 inches

Kirkwood Mountain Resort: 181 inches

Heavenly Mountain Resort: 103 inches

Palisades Tahoe: 181 inches

Mt. Rose Ski Tahoe: 129 to 177 inches

Northstar California Resort: 158 inches

What’s the avalanche danger in Tahoe?

While avalanches can occur at any elevation due to heavy amounts of snow layered upon a slope, people could also potentially trigger an avalanche when traveling below or near a slope.

According to the Sierra Avalanche Center’s latest forecast, which ranks avalanche risks on a scale of one to five, Monday’s avalanche danger is at a two, or “moderate,” in backcountry areas of the Sierra Nevada.

“Areas of unstable wet snow may form today on steep, sun exposed slopes as the day progresses,” the avalanche center reported. “Exercise caution in steep sun exposed terrain where the surface crust has melted away, and the top few inches of snow are wet.”

Across California, ski resorts have preventative measures to minimize the possibility of an avalanche, including explosives, cutting the snow with skis, checking snow pits and studying the slopes, according to the Ski California website.

Ski resorts will also impose trail and terrain closures to prevent skiers from getting caught in an avalanche.

However, each person is also responsible for taking care of themselves and preparing for avalanches on their own, the website states.

What’s in the forecast for Tahoe?

Sun rays break through fog and trees at Palisades Tahoe as empty lifts make their way up the mountain on Thursday, Dec. 21, 2023. Many Tahoe-area ski resorts have limited runs open due to a lack of snow and warmer temperatures. Hector Amezcua/hamezcua@sacbee.com
Sun rays break through fog and trees at Palisades Tahoe as empty lifts make their way up the mountain on Thursday, Dec. 21, 2023. Many Tahoe-area ski resorts have limited runs open due to a lack of snow and warmer temperatures. Hector Amezcua/hamezcua@sacbee.com

Snow is in the forecast for South Lake Tahoe this week, according to the National Weather Service.

On Monday, skies will be mostly cloudy with a low around 22 degrees and a high around 45 degrees. Gusts will be at around 5 miles per hour.

Tuesday’s forecast shows mostly sunny skies with a high near 44 degrees and a low around 23.

Wednesday is expected to see a 30% chance of snow after 4 p.m. with a high near 43 degrees and a low around 25. Less than one inch of new snow is possible. Gusts will be at around 15 miles per hour.

On Thursday, there will be a 50% chance of snow likely before 4 p.m. with a high near 41 degrees and a low around 23.

Friday’s forecast shows a slight chance of snow before 1 p.m. with a high near 46 degrees and a low around 29. Snow levels are expected to start at 6700 feet.

On Saturday, skies will be mostly cloudy with a chance of rain and snow. The high will be near 43 degrees and the low around 25.

Sunday will see a slight chance of snow.

What do you want to know about life in Sacramento? Ask our service journalism team your top-of-mind questions in the module below or email servicejournalists@sacbee.com.