Fresh snowfall and dual cloud layers create a striking landscape near Horse Mountain. | Photo courtesy Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office.


Snow is falling across the upper elevations of Humboldt County, creating a winter wonderland atop Berry Summit and dropping three accumulated inches (and counting!) at Titlow Hill. Time to check your generators and bust out the thick blankets because more inclement weather is on the way.

Strong south winds are in the Friday forecast, with gusts of 50 to 70 miles per hour. 

“Expect localized power disruptions, difficult driving conditions, and a high risk for falling limbs and trees,” warns the local office of the National Weather Service. 

State Route 299 remains open as of this writing, with no restrictions, but anyone traveling that route should obviously use caution. Hwy. 36 is open, too, but chains are required (except on four-wheel-drives with snow tires) east of Mad River.

If you must drive across those routes, check the road conditions first. (Here’s the handy CalTrans website for that.)

The Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office issued a press release this afternoon urging locals to “recreate responsibly” and including its annual reminder that the Kneeland-Greenwwood Heights area is not a public playground.  

Berry Summit looked like this at 3:15 p.m. Thursday. | Image via CalTrans.

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Curl up with a mug of hot chocolate and read the rest of the the Sheriff’s Office’s advice below:

With more winter weather ahead this weekend, Humboldt County residents are encouraged to recreate responsibly when visiting areas of our county with snow. Having a safe snow day starts with basic preparedness:

  1. Stay Warm – Be sure to bring water-resistant snow clothing, gloves, hats and scarves to protect against hypothermia. Bring a change of clothes for the drive home and pack extra blankets in case your vehicle becomes disabled.
  2. Check the Road Conditions- Most public access properties require vehicles equipped to handle the snow. Use a 4-wheel drive vehicle and always carry chains.
  3. Utilize Public Recreation Locations- Residents are asked to use public recreation locations only, such as the Horse Mountain Botanical Area in the Six Rivers National Forest. Though there may be snow, the Kneeland-Greenwood Heights area is private property and trespassers can be prosecuted.
  4. Bring Provisions- Whether going sledding or just traveling through a snowy area, bring food and water in case your vehicle becomes disabled. Always take your trash with you when you leave.

If your vehicle becomes disabled in the snow and you are not in need of emergency assistance, contact a private towing service. If in need of an emergency rescue, call 9-1-1. Then,

  • Stay in the vehicle.
    1. If you leave your vehicle, you will become disoriented quickly in wind-driven snow and cold.
    2. Run the motor about 10 minutes each hour for heat.
    3. While running the motor, open the window a little for fresh air to avoid carbon monoxide poisoning.
    4. Clear snow from the exhaust pipe to avoid gas poisoning.
  • Be visible to rescuers.
    1. Turn on the vehicle’s parking lights at night.
    2. Tie a bright colored cloth, preferably red, to your antenna or door.
    3. After snow stops falling, raise the hood to indicate you need help.

Humboldt County property owners in snow-prone areas are encouraged to install visible No Trespassing signs to alert snow-goers of private property. Contact the Humboldt County Sheriff’s Special Services Division for assistance at (707) 268-2528.