Restrictions lifted on I-80 after Sierra snow, 137 mph wind

California

RENO, Nev. (AP) — Day-long travel restrictions were lifted on U.S. Interstate 80 in the Sierra late Tuesday after a winter storm packing snow and winds in excess of 130 mph blew through the region, but more rough weather is on the way.

The National Weather Service upgraded a winter storm watch to a warning for the Reno-Tahoe area and much of the Sierra’s eastern front Thursday from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. when a more powerful system is forecast to bring up to a foot of snow on mountain passes and 2 feet on ridge tops.

Less than a half-foot of snow was recorded at most Tahoe-area ski resorts Tuesday but dangerous winds battered the mountain tops and forced chain controls along about a 70-mile stretch of I-80 west of the California-Nevada line.

The National Weather Service says the strongest wind gust was 137 mph at Alpine Meadows near Tahoe City, California at 3:45 a.m. Tuesday.

The neighboring Squaw Valley resort reported a gust of 124 mph. An 85 mph gust was recorded at the top of Mount Rose near Reno and near Walker Lake at Hawthorne.

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