More than a foot of snow fell Friday in some parts of the Bay Area, the first sizable amount of snow in the region in more than a decade, according to the National Weather Service. Piedmont received only rain, but higher elevations in the Berkeley and Oakland Hills — Tilden Park, Grizzly Peak — saw a few inches of accumulation.
About 14 inches of snow were reported on Mount Hamilton east of San Jose as of 2 p.m. Friday, the highest amount in the region, while 11 inches were reported in the Los Gatos area. In the North Bay, 9 inches fell in Calistoga and 8 inches in Angwin. In San Mateo County, about 6 inches fell in the Portola Valley area and 3 inches fell in the Orinda area of the East Bay.
Weather service meteorologist Brooke Bingaman said the last notable day of snowfall in the Bay Area came in February 2011. That day saw more snow at lower elevations, while Friday’s snow accumulated more at higher elevations, she said.
People on social media Friday posted many photos and videos of the Bay Area becoming a winter wonderland, but the region’s roads were more of a horror show, with several highways having to shut down due to icy conditions and downed trees or power lines.
State Highway 17 between San Jose and Santa Cruz, state Highway 29 in Napa County and state Highway 128 in Sonoma County were among the highways shut down because of the winter weather.
Santa Cruz County went so far as to issue an advisory Friday asking people not to travel anywhere in the county except for emergencies.
As of 3 p.m. Friday, nearly 13,000 PG&E customers remained without power in the region, with the most located in the South Bay at about 4,270 customers, according to the utility.
Bingaman said scattered rain and snow showers will continue Friday evening and possibly into Saturday, mainly in the North Bay and in Santa Clara and Monterey counties, but she said “we’ve seen the bulk of this first storm.”
More precipitation is expected in the region from Sunday into Wednesday morning with “some decent rain amounts, and we’re also going to see some snow” at elevations 2,000 feet and above, Bingaman said.
Cold temperatures will also continue over the weekend. Downtown San Francisco is forecast to be 38 degrees Saturday, the first time that temperature was reported there since December 2009, according to Bingaman.
The weather service is warning that the conditions could lead to black ice forming on roads, posing a danger to motorists overnight, even at lower elevations.