California’s First Snowstorm of the Season Heavier Than Expected

California’s First Snowstorm of the Season Heavier Than Expected

Snowpack on the mountains of the Eastern Sierras in Inyo County, near Lone Pine, Calif., on April 7, 2023. (Patrick T. Fallon/AFP via Getty Images)

Jill McLaughlin

Jill McLaughlin

10/27/2023

Updated: 12/30/2023

California’s first significant snowfall of the winter in the Sierra Nevada mountains was measured Oct. 26 near Lake Tahoe.
Staff at the University of California–Berkeley’s Central Sierra Snow Lab reported the area received 3.9 inches of snow in 24 hours at a location near Donner Summit.
According to a social media post by the lab Thursday, the first snowfall was more than anticipated, with most of it falling Wednesday.
“The storm came in as snow rather than rain as was initially expected, which is why accumulation was slightly higher than the 1-3 [inches] forecast. Let’s hope that pattern of overperforming continues!” the lab wrote on Facebook.
Earlier this year, the region received record amounts of snow as several major storms passed through the area. In March, the lab recorded 56.4 feet in the central Sierras, placing it sixth highest in all-time records for the region.
The near-historic snowpack drew crowds of skiers to the slopes and extended the ski season last spring.
Forecasters at the National Weather Service did not expect more snow to fall in the area this weekend or at Tuesday’s Halloween activities in South Lake Tahoe.
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Jill McLaughlin

Jill McLaughlin

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Jill McLaughlin is an award-winning journalist covering politics, environment, and statewide issues. She has been a reporter and editor for newspapers in Oregon, Nevada, and New Mexico. Jill was born in Yosemite National Park and enjoys the majestic outdoors, traveling, golfing, and hiking.

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