(ALAMEDA COUNTY, Calif.) Alameda County and much of the East Bay were soaked over the weekend by a massive atmospheric river and will likely continue to bear the brunt of a serious storm in the early portion of this week.
High winds across the Bay Area led to a number of accidents on highways and roadways over the week, with long traffic stoppages on Highway 24, Interstate 880 and 80. According to the National Weather Service, nearly 80 mph winds whipped through the Santa Cruz Mountains with similarly strong winds rolling over the hills in Livermore.
This could be the start of a hefty ski season for those interested as the East Bay Times reports that the Sierra Nevadas could get as much as six feet of snow stemming from this storm.
Mountains in Sonora could get as much as eight feet of snow. While some Lake Tahoe resorts planned to open this weekend or next, Kirkwood Mountain Resort shut down all of its operations due to the heavy snow.
heIt has not been all smoothing sailing through the early days of the storm, however, with evacuation warnings being issued for Dolan and River Road in Salinas. To make matters worse there, construction of a destroyed portion of Highway 1 has not yet been completed which leaves residents there with fewer options to safely evacuate.
While California as a whole is still in the midst of a brutal drought, a huge portion of the state's water supply comes from atmospheric rivers, which means this storm could have somewhat helpful effects long term. At this point, it's unclear how this specific atmospheric river will help to replenish the Golden State's severely depleted fresh water reserves.