TRUCKEE (CBS SF) — A winter storm front roared through the San Francisco Bay Area Monday, moving eastward where it triggered thundershowers and the possibility of funnel clouds near Sacramento and blizzard conditions in the Sierra.
The storm was the first of two slated to arrive in the area this week following bone dry conditions for much of February. Mt Diablo recorded the highest rainfall total in the Bay Area Monday with about half an inch.
Meanwhile, San Francisco received 0.19 of inch — the most recorded on a single day so far this month.
New video that came into KPIX 5 late Monday afternoon showed hail bouncing off rooftops and piling up on car windshields in Walnut Creek.
Chopper 5 captured an eerie mix of snow and fog atop Mount Hamilton in Santa Clara County Monday afternoon. It was easily cold enough at 4,000 feet for snow. A light dusting was visible in the area surrounding the Lick Observatory.
However, the National Weather Service warned of high winds on the back side of the storm front.
A wind advisory was issued starting at 9 p.m. Monday night through Tuesday morning. Forecasters said winds of 20-35 mph were expected in the Bay Area with gusts topping 50 mph.
As the storm with its unstable air moved eastward it gained in intensity. The weather service warned residents from Chico to Fresno to be on the alert for afternoon thundershowers and possible funnel clouds.
Hailstorms were reported in Woodland, Oroville, Marysville, Palermo, Yuba City and other cities as a line of strong thundershowers rolled through portions of Sutter, Yuba, and Yolo counties.
More aerial footage of hail of the northwest portion of Sacramento showed children playing in it like it was snow and cars leaving tracks on neighborhood roads and malls. A layer of hail could be seen on rooftops and parked cars throughout the area.
The weather service said several weak funnel clouds had been reported associated with the strong storm cells. But there had been no reports of any touchdowns or damage.
In the mountains, the storm front triggered a winter weather advisory with 3-5 inches predicted at elevations as low as 2,000 feet with as much as 16 inches forecasted for the Sierra passes.
The winter weather advisory was in effect until 10 p.m. Monday for the Reno-Tahoe area, where winds were gusting in excess of 60 mph early in the day, and until 4 a.m. Tuesday in northeast Nevada where as much as 9 inches of snow is possible in the upper elevations around Elko.
Four inches of snow already had fallen early Monday on the Sierra’s eastern front in Cedarville, Calif. about 200 miles north of Reno. Wind gusts of 66 mph were recorded in Washoe City south of Reno and 63 mph in Sun Valley north of Reno.
“It has been snowing since around 4 a.m.,” Squaw Valley Kirkwood Meadows resort posted on its web site Monday. “We are expecting up to 15 inches (38 centimeters) of snow by the time the showers taper off tonight.”
Several feet of snow will be possible when a stronger Pacific storm arrives with gusty winds in the Sierra Thursday through Saturday, with rain and snow likely in western Nevada Thursday before changing to all snow, the National Weather Service said.
The average temperature this winter in Reno has been 39.5 degrees — the second-warmest since 1937. The warmest was in 2015.
Colder weather and more snow is expected in March. Dan McEvoy of the Western Regional Climate Center, said the next two to four weeks “are actually looking pretty favorable.”
© Copyright 2018 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.