Fresno County mountains sees first snowfall of 2020 with caution

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- The first snowfall of the season has transformed Shaver Lake and the surrounding mountain communities into a wonderland.

Several inches of snow blanket the town.

"This means winter is here, yay!" said Dee Heirendt, Shaver Lake Sports Manager.

The fresh powder normally brings big business, but Heirendt said the Creek Fire is keeping people away.

But even with less visitors, she's still turning a good profit. Fire crews frequently stop by her store.

"They're camping in high areas still chopping trees down," she said. "Thankfully, we still have these guys we can still take care of."

Another thing keeping people away is the closure of the Sierra National Forrest along with snow parks.

This discouraged many from driving any further than the top of the four-lane. Others couldn't because they didn't anticipate needing chains.

"I knew there was going to be a little bit of weather, but I didn't know if it was going to be snowy like this, so this is a nice treat," said David Adair.

Adair and his family made the most of it. This is the first time his daughter, Kayla, experiences the snow.

They couldn't get into the parks, but the drive was worthwhile.

"I think it is awesome and I really enjoy it," said Kayla.

While alluring, the snowfall comes with additional hazards this year.

Law enforcement officials said burn scars left by the Creek Fire could result in potential mudslides, flash flooding and other disasters.

The Fresno County Sheriff's Office has compiled data to create a map.

It details areas of risk in the mountain communities.

At this point, it is unclear when the Sierra National Forest will reopen, but business owners are hopeful that once we get more snow, those snow parks will reopen.
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