Light showers hit Bay Area as Sierra gets hearty dose of snow

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Friday, May 8, 2015
A light, steady rain fell on Saratoga Avenue near Prospect Road in San Jose, Calif. on May 7, 2015.
A light, steady rain fell on Saratoga Avenue near Prospect Road in San Jose, Calif. on May 7, 2015.

SEBASTOPOL, Calif. (KGO) -- The Sierra got a hearty and much-needed dusting of snow on Thursday morning in Placer County. It was enough snow to temporarily close Tioga and Glacier Point roads in Yosemite National Park and require chains on Interstate 80 between Kingvale and Donner.

In the meantime, parts of the Bay Area saw rain throughout the day. There were light showers on Highway 101 in Palo Alto, a thunderstorm reported in San Jose, and several reports of pea-sized hail in Fremont at about 7:25 a.m.

A light, steady rain fell in San Jose in the afternoon. Wet roads slowed drivers down on Saratoga Avenue near Prospect Road.

And high winds caused problems in the North Bay on Thursday. The winds knocked down power lines near Highway 116 outside Petaluma. Crews were on the scene to repair the lines and get the power back on for more than a dozen customers who were without for a time. Most of the power has been restored.

VIDEO: ABC7 Weather Forecast

In the evening, ABC7 News Meteorologist Sandhya Patel reported that most of the showers were concentrated in the South Bay and Monterey Bay areas. She says showers will diminish overnight with sunnier conditions expected for Friday and mild weather for Mother's Day.

A funnel cloud was reported in Sonoma County at 5:54 a.m. It was later determined that despite its ominous appearance, it wasn't a funnel cloud.

"There were lots of cumulous clouds and they were forming into a big head," said Sebastopol resident David Myrick.

Photos showed a swirling mass, which looked like a funnel cloud forming north of Sebastopol near Lake Sonoma.

Myrick was pretty startled.

"I was worried about my greenhouse blowing over because there was wind in all kinds of directions," he said.

TRACK THE RAIN: Street level interactive map

Luckily there was no damage at Myrick's place or anywhere else around the city, according to police. Fellow Sebastopol resident Bob Jones took notice, too

"It's scary to think about because I've been in tornadoes," he said.

PHOTOS: Sierra hit with snow, Bay Area sees rain

The National Weather Service says it wasn't a funnel cloud. Instead, it was a downdraft of precipitation known as virga.

Myrick says it was still impressive, whatever it was.

"I've never been around funnel clouds," he said. "But you can tell me right now that it wa definitely something to consider."

It's easy to track the storm on Live Doppler 7 HD anytime! Click here to download the ABC7 Weather App for free on Apple's App Store or Google Play.

ABC7 News Meteorologists Mike Nico and Sandhya Patel and reporter Cornell Barnard contributed to this report.