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Heavy snow coats San Bernardino mountains

March 20, 2011 12:00:00 AM PDT
The first day of spring looked more like winter in Wrightwood as heavy snow came down on the San Bernardino mountains Sunday.

Strong winds and heavy snow resulted in winter storm conditions as the storm moved east toward Green Valley Lake and Big Bear.

Heavy rain was expected to fall on slopes below 5,000 feet, where there was an increasing threat for flooding and debris flows early Sunday night.

The possibility of thunder was also present for the Wrightwood area, according to the National Weather Service.

At Mountain High Resort, six inches of snow was added to the slopes, and another foot was expected by Monday.

But the storm also brought high winds, which forced the ski resort to shut down and send its employees home early.

"It was bad," said Chris Anderson of Wrightwood. "Chairs were bumping. They were all over the place. It was horrible."

Strong winds with gusts up to 50 miles per hour made operating the ski lifts too difficult and dangerous.

A chain requirement was in effect for drivers headed to the Mountain High area. It was expected to be lifted by Monday afternoon.

Also, a high-wind advisory was issued for the Cajon Pass.

City News Service and the Associated Press contributed to this report.