A powerful winter storm will move through the region Thursday and Friday bringing high winds and heavy mountain rain and snow (with lesser valley amounts.) A High Wind Warning is in effect Thursday from 10 am to 10 pm, and a Winter Storm Warning is in effect for the mountains from Thursday through Friday afternoons.
Valley winds will increase starting in the morning, and some of the wind prone areas could see damaging gusts in excess of 60 mph by the afternoon. The air ahead of the cold front will be quite warm boosting Reno’s high temperature to near 60 degrees, before falling about 20 degrees on Friday to near 40. Rainfall on Thursday will mostly be limited to the west side of the valley because of a very strong rain shadow effect, but as the winds ease late Thursday precipitation should spill over more efficiently. Rain should also turn to snow to the valley, and some light accumulations are possible just prior to the Friday morning commute.
In the mountains, snow levels will start out high Thursday (up to 8,000’) but will fall quickly overnight to the lake itself. Travel over the passes will likely be very difficult Thursday night through mid-day Friday.