Eastern Madera County began to turn into a snowy winter wonderland last week as snow began to fall in the late afternoon Tuesday, Feb. 19. By nightfall, the world had turned white and the snowy conditions caused Highway 41 to be closed for a few hours until the road could be cleared.
According to Philip Messerschmitt, information services for the Bass Lake Ranger District, snowfall was inconsistent throughout EMC. While some areas received just a couple inches of snow, other areas reported as much as 15 inches. Snowfall hit most of EMC -- even areas that don't usually receive much snow such as Raymond and O'Neals.
After last month's snowpack measurement by the California Department of Water Resources, electronic readings revealed that the central Sierra snowpack's water content was 90% of normal for the date and 54% of the April 1 average.
According to Messerschmitt, the Mountain Area has only received 17.83 inches of rain as of Friday, Feb. 22 -- quite a bit lower than the area's average of 23 inches this time of year.