(KRON) — There’s no shortage of snow in the Sierra this ski season, but what’s good for trails at the resorts has an opposite effect on the roads.
“I 80 has multiple challenges that they have not seen in decades,” said Tahoe expert, Kevin “Coop” Cooper.
Getting to and from the mountains was a serious challenge for travelers this weekend. With chain controls in effect, spinouts held up traffic and Highway 50 was closed in both directions on Monday.
Cooper said the timing of the storm kept a lot of tourists away.
“Martin Luther King is a huge weekend for these businesses, and they rely on that rental walk up traffic that ski in and ride school traffic to come through the doors,” he said.
Heavenly Mountain Resort in South Lake Tahoe has been breaking snow records left and right.
“Season to date we’re over 300 inches for the season, an average season for us is over 250 inches so we blew that out of the water last week,” said VP of Mountain Operations, Rick Newberry.
Newberry was able to get out and enjoy the sun Tuesday, but he says the weekend didn’t go as well.
“Classic Sierra Storm,” he said. “We had really big snow fall and really strong winds and that impacts our operations, it impacted the travel for people getting here.”
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Less than two miles from Heavenly is Tahoe Sports LTD. Department Head CT Rowe said the rental numbers were steady over the weekend, but that winter storms haven’t been so kind to him.
“A tree actually fell onto my house, came right into my bedroom and happened to two of our co-workers as well,” said Rowe. “Trees right through the roof, right through the sheet rock, right into your room.”
Strong winds and heavy snow fall have been a challenge since Christmas, but if the weather cooperates Cooper, Newberry and Rowe all say that ski resorts are set up for long season well into spring.