(KTXL) — A pair of storm systems are heading our way.
The first storm will begin Wednesday night in Northern California. It will be enhanced by an atmospheric river, meaning there is potential for downpours.
There will be scattered on and off showers on Thursday while it snows in the Sierra.
There’s a Winter Weather Advisory in effect for elevations above 4,500 feet from 5 p.m. Wednesday to 1 p.m. Thursday. Travel will be difficult at times as 6 to 12 inches of snow accumulate.
Those patrolling Interstate 80 said they do not want a repeat of what happened earlier in the week when snow caused drivers to have trouble on the road.
“The road feels good but the conditions change minute to minute,” said Sean Nichols, who lives in Sierra.
Nichols said he has lived in the area for 15 years and that he is accustomed to driving in the storm. But he said he has noticed not everyone traveling toward the Sierra is used to the conditions.
“I had a guy trailing me at 65, and I didn’t even want to go 65. So, I just pulled over and let him by then I realized I’d rather be doing 50,” Nichols said.
Law enforcement are looking to avoid scenes like Monday.
“We had a total of 12 crashes in about a six-hour period,” said California Highway Patrol Officer Brett Martin. “One thing to remember is that what the weather is like down in the valley is oftentimes not what it is up here. It could be sunny even in Auburn and by the time you get up the hill it’s snowing.”
The next storm will likely start Friday night and be most impactful through Saturday morning.
This system looks equal or slightly stronger in strength compared to the Thursday storm. Similar snow and rain totals are expected.
While beneficial for reservoirs, these storms will not dramatically change drought conditions. They will, however, stave off what looked like an extremely early start to fire season.