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Light Snow On Twin Peaks; Heavier In Southbay

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Snowflake. (CBS)

Snowflake. (CBS)

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SAN FRANCISCO (BCN) — Snow fell on San Francisco’s Twin Peaks and Merced Heights neighborhoods early Saturday morning, according to a National Weather Service forecaster.

Current Weather Conditions & Forecast | Live: CBS 5 Hi-Def Doppler Radar | Interactive: Doppler Radar | KCBS Traffic Report

A resident near Shields and Arch streets, located about 400 feet above sea level in the Merced Heights neighborhood, reported that snow had lightly dusted the rooftop of his home about 12:30 a.m., forecaster Rick Canepa said.

“The air mass of this storm is very cold compared to other systems,” Canepa said.

“I’m not surprised” about the snowfall, Canepa said.

Sam Ostrander, an employee at Alice’s Restaurant on Skyline Boulevard in Woodside, said it looked “really snowy still” this afternoon, with snow still covering the ground and treetops and roofs of nearby homes and businesses.

Ostrander said she saw many people building snowmen on the sides of the road this morning.

“They were everywhere,” she said.

At the Thomas Fogarty Winery and Vineyards further south on Skyline Boulevard, employees tried to hit passersby with snowballs, tasting room manager Rick Davis said.

“There was enough to make a few snowballs,” Davis said, adding that the snow was good for throwing since “it seemed fairly dry, not wet and slushy.”

Besides being used as a projectile, the snow served another purpose for the winery.

“We had enough to put bottles of wine in to chill them down,” Davis said.

There wasn’t much snow just to the east at the Palo Alto Hills Golf and Country Club in Palo Alto, but it was cold enough to force the golf course to delay opening this morning due to frost, employee Joe Dolby said.

There wasn’t much snow on the actual course, and it had all evaporated by the time Dolby arrived at 6 a.m. However, he said he could still see “like a quarter-, half-inch on some houses” on nearby hills.

Bay Area Snowfall In Pictures

Bay Area Twitter users celebrated the icy arrival online with tweets, including “SNOWMG! It’s snowing on Twin Peaks…” and “Flurries…the ‘snow’ has arrived in SF.”

Another resident near Duboce Triangle said he saw wet snowflakes in the air just before 1 a.m., though they reportedly didn’t stick to the ground, Canepa said.

The snow was due to record low temperatures throughout the Bay Area. San Jose tied a 114-year-old record when the temperature dropped to 33 degrees overnight, the coldest it had been on a Feb. 26 since 1897.

San Francisco and San Francisco International Airport also tied decades-old record lows, while Oakland broke its record low temperature for today’s date. The temperature dropped to 35 degrees, beating the previous record of 38 degrees in 1987.

Canepa said that, at 30,000 feet, the storm’s central temperature was measured at approximately -31 degrees Fahrenheit.

“Usually what’s way up high is a reflection of what’s going on at the surface,” he said. “This is one of the coldest systems we’ve seen in years.”

But Canepa said that conditions are expected to warm up throughout the weekend, making additional San Francisco snowflake sightings pretty unlikely.

“I’m not saying that it won’t happen,” he said. “But it’s certainly not as probable.”

(© 2011 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Bay City News contributed to this report.)

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