Snow in San Francisco? Mild cities don’t escape winter storm

Published 8:12 am Wednesday, February 6, 2019

PORTLAND, Ore. — Snow, ice and shivering cold blasted normally mild cities from Seattle to Las Vegas to San Francisco on Tuesday as the winter weather sweeping across the U.S. West shuttered schools, made travel treacherous and closed all roads in Yosemite National Park.

Winter storms have been hitting the West for several days and brought a surprise dusting to peaks overlooking San Francisco — the city’s first notable snow in eight years. Yosemite’s ski area closed, restaurants had shorter hours and shuttles were not running because of snow-covered roads.

“It’s beautiful and we certainly need the snow, but we’re asking people to stay indoors,” park spokesman Scott Gediman said. “As the weather improves, we’ll plow roads and assess the situation.”

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California is still recovering from a drought that led to tight water restrictions and contributed to severe wildfires.

Temperatures plunged into the teens in Seattle overnight, making roads slick, and schools throughout the area shut down for a second day. Unusual snow fell a day earlier, causing crashes and canceling flights, and lower-than-normal temperatures were expected throughout the week.

Rare snow and cold also walloped Portland, Oregon. Residents awoke to unexpected overnight snowfall that closed schools and left some higher elevation roads slick for the morning commute.

Natalie Razey, 9, of Lake Oswego, Oregon, said when the snow flurries started Monday, her teacher shared some advice for ensuring a snow day Tuesday.

“Our teacher let us do a snow dance while it was snowing at school yesterday, and I flushed ice cubes down the toilet and I put spoons under my pillow,” she said during a break from sledding and snowball fights.

In Nevada, the National Weather Service reported light snow in northwest Las Vegas. More than 3 feet (1 meter) of snow has fallen at the top of some Lake Tahoe ski resorts in the last 24 hours, bringing the total to 6 feet (2 meters) since storms began Saturday.