Nowhere to Go: Snow, Slides Close State Route 74

A storm brought rain to the Coachella Valley and heavy snow to the nearby mountains, causing some flooding and a road

Heavy snow was reported in Idyllwild, prompting the closure of State Route 74, said California Highway Patrol Officer Ramon Perez. The highway was shut about 1:30 p.m. between Palm Desert and Hemet until further notice, Perez said.

"There are too many vehicles that are getting stuck in the snow," Perez said.

Earlier Monday, two roads near Mountain Center were hit by rock- and mudslides. The first slide was reported at 7:55 a.m. on  State Route 74 near Strawberry Creek Bridge, according to the CHP. A large amount of mud and rocks were reported on the roadway, according to the CHP.

A second slide was reported at 12:22 p.m. on State Route 243 at Twin Pines Road, the CHP reported.

No injuries were reported.

This morning's downpour caused flooding on Los Gatos Road and Date Palm Drive, said city spokeswoman Lynn Mallotto, but public works employees cleared the drains and the water quickly receded.

Light rain fell on the Southland Monday, and a cold front was expected to move through with showers and gust winds, bringing the snow level down to as low as 3,000 feet and creating "treacherous" driving conditions.

  • All seven schools in the Bear Valley Unified School District in San Bernardino County are closed Monday due to snow.
  • 8 a.m. Monday: The CHP reports a snow slide is blocking Highway 18 east of Snow Valley in the San Bernardino Mountains. Initial reports are that four vehicles are blocked between snow berms (at Lakeview Point, between Snow Valley and Big Bear Lake).

The storm, the third since last week, also brings a slight chance of thunderstorms, according to the National Weather Service. Because of the storm's showery nature, rainfall amounts will vary around the region, NWS forecasters said. They said rainfall totals generally will range from a tenth of an inch to a half-inch, although greater amounts may be recorded in the San Gabriel Valley close to the Foothill (210) Freeway.

The wet weather will be accompanied by strong winds, with the strongest expected in mountain areas and the Antelope Valley, where winds of between 20 and 35 mph were forecast, gusting at as much as 55 mph, according to the NWS.
A wind advisory was scheduled to be in effect in the Antelope Valley until midnight.


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In mountain areas, except for the Santa Monica Mountains Recreational Area, a winter weather advisory was in effect until 4 a.m. Tuesday because of the expectation of snow and blowing snow.
"Snow levels will be around 3,500 feet but could drop as low as 3,000 feet in heavier showers," according to an NWS advisory.
"Gusty winds will cause blowing snow, and snow and blowing snow will occasionally reduce visibility to near zero.

"Driving conditions will be treacherous at times in the mountains, and snow may affect travel on portions of Interstate 5 near The Grapevine and portions of the 14 Freeway over the Soledad Pass," the advisory said.

The NWS forecast snow accumulation of between 3 to 7 inches in the mountains of Los Angeles, Ventura and Santa Barbara counties, an inch or two in the foothills above the Antelope Valley.
After Tuesday morning, no more precipitation is expected in the region until Saturday.

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