Weather Wednesday: Lake Tahoe avalanche

Elaina Rusk


BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KGET) — Lake Tahoe reported an avalanche on Wednesday morning.

According to a Palisades Tahoe spokesperson posting to X, the avalanche happened at approximately 9:30 a.m. above the GS gully area of KT-22. Palisades Tahoe patrol and mountain operations teams are performing searches at this time, and both sides of the mountain are closed.

An avalanche is a rapid flow of snow down a hill or mountainside. Although avalanches can occur on any steep slope given the right conditions, certain times of the year and types of locations are naturally more dangerous.

While avalanches are sudden, there are typically a number of warning signs you can look for or feel before one occurs. In 90% of avalanche incidents, the snow slides are triggered by the victim or someone in the victim’s party.

Avalanches kill more than 150 people worldwide each year. Avalanche warnings and special advisories are included on the National Weather Service websites and are broadcasted over NOAA Weather Radio.

That brings us to our Sierra snowpack levels for Jan. 10 this year. Our snowpack in northern California is 40% of normal, while our snowpack in central California is 38% of normal and our snowpack in southern California is 29% of normal.

For Jan. 10, 2023, northern California’s Sierra snowpack was at 173% of normal, central California’s was at 203% of normal and southern California’s was at 218% of normal. Sierra snowpack levels have significantly decreased, however, we will catch up, as our seasonal average shows we are wetter than normal due to El Niño.

Sierra snowpack levels are continuing to increase this year at a slower rate. So, there is still some hope.

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2024-01-10 20:57:08 , KGET 17

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