Snow could drop into Sierra foothills tonight

By Christina O'Haver, The Union Democrat January 09, 2013 07:50 am

Following a wet start to the winter season, the Mother Lode could see snow as low as Sonora and Angels Camp tonight.

The snow level is expected to drop to around 2,100 feet overnight, as temperatures dip into the 20s and a small storm blows through, according to the National Weather Service in Sacramento.

 

The chance of precipitation today is 30 percent, and tonight it’s 40 percent. The chance of snow after midnight is 20 percent.

Annual snowfall in Sonora over the last 108 years averaged 3.7 inches, according to National Weather Service meteorologist Drew Peterson.

However, the National Weather Service is not projecting much snow accumulation, if any, in Sonora today, Peterson said.

Higher elevations are not expected to see much snow either, with estimated snowfall of less than four inches.

“With this system, we’re really not expecting much overall,” Peterson said.

But the first snow storms of the season in Sonora often lead to more traffic collisions, according to Police Chief Mark Stinson.

“(Motorists) need to increase stopping distance, drive slower and make sure their vehicle is prepared for winter,” he said.

He recommended drivers inspect tires, windshield wipers, defrosters, heaters and antifreeze levels before driving in poor weather.

The storm is expected to clear out Thursday, leaving mostly cloudy skies and colder temperatures.

The daytime highs will decrease from about 55 today to the low 40s on Thursday and Friday.

The overnight lows will drop from last night’s 30 degrees to the mid-20s tonight and Friday night.

The National Weather Service is forecasting clear conditions Friday through Saturday, before another storm moves into the area Sunday.

“It looks like a really weak system, so we’re not expecting too much out of that one,” Peterson said.