Clear skies ahead for holiday weekend in Sonoma County, Tahoe

  • Christa Teitelbaum, Glen Ellen, left, and Elaine Dengler, Santa Rosa hike with a group of about 100 hikers through a terraced vineyard while on a guided hike on the Kunde Estate in Kenwood on Saturday morning Feb. 9, 2013. Scott Manchester / The Press Democrat

Shirtsleeve warmth at home, deep snow in the Sierra and sunny blue skies over both places should make for an ideal winter holiday weekend, perhaps marred only by gasoline scraping close to $4 a gallon.

Saturday should be the most spring-like of all, with daytime highs in or near the 70s in Sonoma County, about 10 degrees above average, the National Weather Service said.

"Hard to complain about that," meteorologist Austin Cross said.

The forecast for Santa Rosa is 68 Saturday and 63 on Sunday, both sunny days, followed by a partly cloudy 58 degrees on President's Day.

Rain showers are expected on Tuesday, amounting to one-quarter of an inch in Santa Rosa, with a chance of added precipitation Wednesday and Thursday, Cross said.

That could be considered a drawback, except the city has had only 1.25 inches since Jan. 1.

"We do sort of need it," Cross said.

There's also a chance of thunderstorms and small hail Tuesday as a storm system approaches from the Gulf of Alaska.

Meanwhile, the absence of weekend storms means the highways are clear to the Sierra, where Alpine Meadows near Tahoe City has a seven-foot base of snow at upper elevations.

"It's a great weekend to get out," Alpine Meadows spokeswoman Jenny Kendrick said.

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