Heavy Sierra snowfall translates to happy skiers, replenished reservoirs

TRUCKEE – For weeks, the storms kept coming, one after another.

Now that the sky has cleared, Sierra Nevada residents are digging out to discover one of the most majestic and impressive debuts by winter in recent memory.

“The snow is just wonderful,” said Elizabeth Carmel, a professional photographer and co-owner of the Carmel Gallery in Truckee. “To have all that we’ve had at this time of year, it’s definitely a winter to treasure.”

From Sequoia and Yosemite national parks to Lake Tahoe, the mountain range is draped in a shimmering blanket of snow up to 18 feet deep in some places. The bounty of moisture is expected to yield lush wildflower blooms, healthier forests and fuller-than-normal reservoirs this year.

Read more: http://www.sacbee.com/2011/01/10/3311858/heavy-sierra-snowfall-translates.html#ixzz1AgTJUKjz

The Final Sierra Snow Count Is In-A Banner Year

The last snow survey of the year has taken place in the Sierra, and the results show a banner season for the Sierra snowpack. According to figures released at the end of last week, the northern Sierra finished the season at 188% of normal, the central Sierra at 121% and the southern Sierra at 139%.

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Late season snow in California means adequate water supplies

Due to the larger-than-expected amounts of snow in California in March and April, the Department of Water Resources is optimistic about the amount of water that the state will receive this year. The amount of snow is 143% higher than normal for this time of year across the Sierra Nevada mountains.

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Rising waters mean rising worries on Yuba River

As snow from a strong Sierra Nevada winter starts its annual rush down the Yuba River, concerns about downstream safety are rising with the water level.

After performing six swimmer rescues and responding to one fatality at the river last year, Nevada County Consolidated Fire Chief Tim Fike wishes potential spring swimmers would heed his advice about the Yuba.

“Admire it from a distance,” Fike said.

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Spring snowmelt prompts water safety warning

“Those planning outings near mountain streams, rivers, reservoirs and canals need to be extra vigilant and take appropriate safety measures,” said Alvin Thoma, director of PG&E’s power generation department. “Water flows will fluctuate with the warming and cooling of the day so always be prepared for a change in conditions.”

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Bountiful snowfall may not provide drought relief for California

But all experts agree that this season of voluminous precipitation won’t be adequate to refill the state’s parched reservoirs. 

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