Avoid driving up to mountain communities during upcoming storm: Officials

With another winter storm headed for Central California, officials are warning travelers about potential hazards on the way up to mountain communities.

"We do advise the public not to travel while the storm is passing through, but if they must then obviously prepare yourself," said Caltrans spokesperson Sam Yniguez.

Everyone traveling to the mountains is advised to bring tire chains and prepare for possible delays even if the weather is calm.
Crews have been actively plowing and cleaning roads of snow and fallen trees since last weekend's storm.

Friday's weather maker is expected to dump even more powder in the higher elevations

"There are chain controls at the last part once you exit Shaver Lake. So about the last 15 miles we'll have chain controls but the roads are in quite good shape considering how much snow has fallen," said China Peak Mountain Resort CEO Tim Cohee.

Cohee describes the conditions as perfect for skiers and snowboards this weekend.

Many are referring to the light deep snow as Champagne Powder.

"I would tell you that anywhere in the United States - and I've been to over 50 ski resorts - it's no better anywhere in the country than it is right here in California and China Peak. This is as good as anywhere in the United States right now."

Heading into the weekend -- all major roads leading into the higher elevations remain open but Caltrans officials are monitoring all highways just in case the expected storm forces detours or closures

"If a storm is projected to run through the area, we do advise against traveling, but if you must travel be prepared. You may have to go around and if it gets dangerous enough, the road may close so you may want to postpone your plans."

A good tool to help with your trip is by downloading the Caltrans Quick Map app for all the latest in road closures and delays.
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