Wet weather mucks up air, land travel 

Whether trekking by land or air, Bay Area residents and visitors may continue to hit travel snags this week.

A cold front heading into California from the Gulf of Alaska, which dumped rain and scattered thunderstorms all over the Bay Area and much of the Central Coast this weekend, most likely won’t let up until Wednesday, National Weather Service forecaster Diana Henderson said.

Still, the weather system is expected to continue dropping snow in the mountains through the rest of this week, but not nearly as much as it did this weekend and on Monday, Henderson said. Certainhigh points in the Bay Area are expected to see small amounts of snow as well.

The weather really made an impact farther north, where it forced road closures on Highway 50 and on several points on Interstate 80, the two main arteries into Lake Tahoe ski country. South Lake Tahoe and Truckee both saw nearly a foot of snow, according to South Lake Tahoe-based CHP Sgt. Mike Stewart and Truckee-based CHP Officer Joe Edwards.

Highway 50 was closed in both directions for three or four hours on Sunday for avalanche control, Stewart said. I-80 remained closed Monday at several points, mostly in California, starting just below Gold Run and continuing beyond the state line, Edwards said. It’s hard to say where and when the roads would reopen, Edwards said.

"Winter has finally hit and it’s hitting us really hard," Edwards said.

Though it has been a dry winter thus far for snow resorts, snow enthusiasts came in droves up the mountain after reports of snow had come in. Traffic continued to crawl on the return trip Monday, and Edwards advised people to be ready to sleep in their cars.

"It’s one of those sit-and-wait, stop-and-go situations," Edwards said.

San Francisco International Airport saw delays anywhere between 15 minutes and two hours for practically all destinations much of Monday, according to airport duty manager John Ginty. A low fog ceiling and the resulting low visibility grounded outbound flights, while more severe weather conditions in places like Chicago delayed many incoming flights.

tramroop@examiner.com

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A daily newspaper covering San Francisco, San Mateo County and serving Alameda, Marin and Santa Clara counties.
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