Snow falls and melts during New Year’s weekend |

Snow falls and melts during New Year’s weekend

Teya Vitu

Carson City got a white New Year’s Day with a surprise storm Saturday that left an inch or less of snow on the valley floors.

Traces of snow survived to mid-day Sunday on the north-facing slopes of the skate park at Mills Park.

Brothers Kyle, 11, and Cody Garber, 7, of Rocklin, Calif., laced up inline skates and took to the partly dry, partly wet and partly snow-covered skate park.

“It’s slippery,” Kyle Garber said. “It’s pretty hard because of the snow.”

The Garber boys, along with dad, Clark Garber, and friend Nick Marchesano from St. Louis visited the boys’ grandfather, Charles Garber, who lives in Indian Hills.

Charles Garber welcomed the snow but once Sunday warmed up, snow play had to give way to skating.

“It think the snow is past due,” Garber said. “I have four grandsons who love to play in the snow and they don’t have anywhere to play. We saw a little snow last night and they were just whooping it up.”

The forecast calls for a slight chance of flurries this afternoon with snow likely Tuesday.

“Tuesday mid-day there’s a good chance for snow through Tuesday evening or midnight,” said Dave Pike, a meteorologist at the National Weather Service in Reno.

Pike said the Carson City area should expect about an inch or two of snow with Tuesday’s storm.

The New Year’s Day snowfall was the first to stick in Carson City since Dec. 9. The weak cold front gave little advance notice.

“This system dug a little further south than expected,” Pike said. “The tail end caught us.”

January started quite in contrast to December, which had only .07 inches of measurable precipitation – rain or snow reduced to liquid form. That was .92 inches less than normal, Pike said.

The weather service no longer maintains a data base on snow amounts.

Even temperatures in December were out of character. After Dec. 3, Carson City’s normal high temperature no longer reaches 50 degrees. Yet this December had 13 days with temperatures in the 50s, nine of those after Dec. 12.

“I wouldn’t want to predict what’s going to happen,” Carson River Watermaster Julian Larrouy said before the New Year’s snow. “Even the weather forecasters don’t put a lot of faith in the long-range predictions.”

A few big storms could bring the currently meager snowpack roaring back. Larrouy said he can recall years when serious precipitation didn’t happen until February or March, bringing otherwise dismal water years to almost average.

As of Thursday, the Carson River was running at 100 cubic feet per second, close to average for late December.