It was a white Christmas for people in the Sierra Nevada as fresh powder blanketed the slopes at resorts in the Tahoe region, a much different scene from a year ago.
Eleven inches of fresh snow dusted the mountains in the past 24 hours, officials said. The Sierra snowpack stood at 77 percent of average statewide Tuesday, as opposed to 37 percent of average a year ago at this time, weather forecasters said.
At Donner Ski Ranch, people on the slopes said the snow was a welcome Christmas gift.
"We've been burned for so many years, it probably owed us a couple," one skier said.
Another snow enthusiast added: "We're glad we got some snow, and we're glad it's powder this early in the year. It was a great Christmas."