Sierra Residents Still Digging Out from Winter Storms Brace for Spring Snow

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SODA SPRINGS — Although spring is here it’s hard to tell by the snow tunnels that line Donner Pass Road in Soda Springs. The walls of frozen powder remain 10 feet high in some spots. For the past couple of weeks, Kingvale resident Mick Sterling has been playing an exhausting game of snow shoveling catch-up. “My blower broke down the last couple of days of the last big storm and it left me about 8 feet behind,” Sterling told FOX40. Slowly but surely, he has been chipping away at all the snow — but more is on the way. “Just keep shoveling,” said Brian Bozack. “It’s part of living in Donner Summit.” The Shray family has called Soda Springs home for the past 20 years. The walls of snow are so high in their community it’s like being inside of a maze. “We’re getting ready for the next round,” said Steve Shray. “I mean, obviously, we’re all over it but the ski resorts are still open and so another 2 or 3 feet this week and we’ll be back out there on the slopes.” However, a winter like the one California just had has its advantages. But residents say they have had to stay on top of it. “We were away for three weeks and we got back to 6 feet of snow and it took two days to just get back to normal,” Shray said.
Bozack travels the world snowboarding during the winter. He says no matter where he goes, the Sierra snow amounts remain the most impressive he’s seen. “Tahoe definitely has more snow than anywhere I’ve been this winter, Japan, Canada, Washington. We’ve got more than anyone I know,” Bozack said. As for the snowing coming this week, Caltrans says they will be fully staffed with rested plow operators. They also won’t have to deal with weekend crowds while plowing Interstate 80. “It makes it a lot easier for us as far as safety goes,” said Caltrans Superintendent Greg Dealba. “The increased traffic volume does pose a problem for us because it triples and quadruples the travel times for people traveling the interstate.” Up at Boreal Mountain Resort, Bobby Shmauda estimated he had been up on the slopes 70 days this season. “This year’s just been delivering like none other. It’s been fabulous,” he said. He’s nowhere near ready to say goodbye to the snow. “You know, there was one day where my dogs were talking to me. I’ve got two puppies and they said, ‘Dad, we need to see some green,'” Shmauda said. “So we drove down to Sacramento for a day, hung out at the park for about 30 minutes and drove back up. But no, I’m never gonna get over it. Yeah, this is my life.”


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