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California winter storm: Blizzard warning issued as snow heads to Sierra Nevada mountains

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(LOS ANGELES) — A blizzard warning is in effect in California as a new storm system moves into the mountains with potential to deliver more than 10 feet of snow.

The heavy snow will begin blasting California’s Sierra Nevada mountains Thursday afternoon and evening, and will continue into the weekend.

Up to 12 feet of snow is possible.

Gusty winds could reach 80 mph, causing dangerous whiteout conditions on the road.

A backcountry avalanche watch has been issued for the central Sierra Nevada mountains, including the Lake Tahoe area. “High to extreme avalanche danger” is possible from Friday morning to Saturday night, the National Weather Service warned.

Along the California coast, rain is in the forecast for the San Francisco Bay area Thursday afternoon and evening. Some parts of Northern California could see 2 to 5 inches of rain.

The rain will move into Southern California, including Los Angeles, this weekend, with 1 to 2 inches of rain possible in the foothills.

The region could see some flooding, and with the ground already heavily saturated, landslides and mudslides are also possible.

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