California Blizzard Warning Map, Today's Forecast

Blizzards are set to fall on parts of California, with the National Weather Service warning residents

Warnings for blizzards across the northern and central Sierra Nevada are in place from tomorrow (February 29) to Sunday (March 3). The Lake Tahoe area will also see heavy snowfall.

The National Weather Service (NWS) reported that “extremely heavy snow with blizzards conditions” will be heaviest in the Sierra on Friday and through Friday night. Officials are predicting up to 10 feet of snow could fall on areas above 5,000 feet from Thursday to Sunday.

“Significant disruptions to daily life” are likely, the NWS said.

Heavy snow is also expected in areas of elevations above 3,000 feet. By the weekend, lower areas will also see snow due to the travel of cold air.

Those living around Lake Tahoe will see around 2 to 4 feet of snow.

california blizzard warning map, today's forecast

A graphic show the intense weather set to release in parts of California over the coming days. Rare blizzard warnings are in place for parts of the Sierra. National Weather Service

Winds will also become incredibly strong over the mountains, reaching gusts of 50 to 65 mph.

Officials are warning that mountain travel will be “extremely dangerous to impossible,” particularly on Friday.

Although skies are clear today, this will all change tomorrow, the National Weather Service reported.

“A strong, cold storm system will drop down from the Pacific Northwest, beginning to bring some precipitation chances mainly for the Southern Cascades, northern Coast Range, and Shasta County tonight. As the trough continues to quickly dig into the area Thursday, winds and precipitation will continue to increase and spread southward,” the weather service reported in a forecast. “The time is NOW to prepare for this *significantly* impactful winter storm.”

Experts are advising residents to stay home during the blizzard, in order to stay safe.

Blizzards in California are not common, making these warnings fairly rare. So far this year, snowfall in the state has been relatively slow and snowpack in the surrounding mountains remain below average.

The state has seen some heavy rainfall in recent weeks, caused by a series of atmospheric rivers. However they did not do much for the snow in the surrounding mountains, and some were relatively weak compared to others.

Last year, intense winter storms caused a record amount of snowpack in the surrounding mountains. It remains to be seen whether this incoming blizzard could raise levels that match that of last year.

This year is an El Nino year, which usually brings wetter than usual weather to the West Coast. However, experts have also put these increased extreme weather events down to climate change, which seems to be intensifying weather conditions across the globe.

Do you have a tip on a science story that Newsweek should be covering? Do you have a question about blizzards Let us know via [email protected].

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