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Mammoth mega-storm expected to drop up to 20 feet; ‘God help us’

It’s snowing in the Sierra. It started snowing Jan. 4, and you can already see what Mother Nature has wrought.

Another blizzard swept Mammoth Mountain on Wednesday, the precursor to a string of storms expected to bring up to 20 feet of fresh snow in the next 10 days, the resort says.

Since Tuesday, 26 to 48 inches of fresh snow had fallen, with the deepest totals at the summit. Plows were working furiously to keep lots and streets clear.

Normal resort operations could be affected as personnel struggle to deal with the snow. 

The cause of the snow? One of those “atmospheric rivers” that forecasters refer to in particularly generous storms like this. In the next week and a half, the Sierra resort is expecting three of those wet cycles.

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It is shaping up as the second epic season in a row for the big resort five hours north of Los Angeles.

“They say we could get up to 20 feet,” said Mammoth Lakes resident Cynthia Hayes. “God help us.”

Locals were waiting out the storm while anticipating great skiing on a mountain of fresh powder.

Farther north, Lake Tahoe resorts were digging out from the same system. This latest storm dropped more than 2 feet, and the forecast is calling for more than 4 feet of snow through Thursday.

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Closer to home, resorts in and near the San Bernardino Mountains were awaiting the same weather system, while hoping temperatures dipped enough to turn rain into snow.

travel@latimes.com

Twitter: @LATimestravel

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