Rain in Sacramento, up to 2 feet of snow in the Sierra? What to know for the week ahead

ERIC PAUL ZAMORA/ezamora@fresnobee.com

UPDATE: Rain and near-freezing temperatures coming to Sacramento. Here’s the latest forecast

If you haven’t already, it looks like it’s time to break out those gloves and umbrellas — and potentially even the tire chains.

Following a warm and dry Thanksgiving weekend, temperatures across Northern California will plunge this week as multiple storm systems are expected to drop rain in Sacramento and dump snow on the Sierra Nevada.

The first storm, which arrives Monday, is forecast to dust the Sierra with up to 3 inches of snow and create powerful winds on the mountains. Heavenly Mountain Resort reported Monday morning that it shut down its gondola due to the high winds.

But that’s just a small preview for the main show — a second system that will hit Northern California on Wednesday.

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The Sierra Nevada could see 1 to 2 feet of snow drop between Wednesday and Thursday night, according to Scott Rowe, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Sacramento. Palisades Tahoe ski resort cautioned that winds over the ridge tops could crank up above 100 mph on Thursday, so “expect some lift closures,” the resort’s website states.

“The heavy snow forecast does look like it’ll bring about some travel impacts,” Rowe warned, adding that the mountains could see additional snowfall on Saturday as well.

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In the Sacramento Valley, Rowe said residents should brace for near or below-freezing temperatures overnight, as well as gusty winds and rainfall later this week. Some parts of rural Sacramento County could see temperatures drop below 30 degrees overnight, according to the forecast.

“We could be seeing some of the coldest weather so far this season in Sacramento,” he said, adding that people should bring any outdoor plants inside and inspect car tires and wiper blades ahead of the storm.

Motorists are advised to take caution while traveling during the storms, as they’re likely to cause slick roads and other hazardous conditions.