Heavy snow shuts down several East County highways

Data pix.

SAN DIEGO -- Several routes to San Diego's mountain communities were shut down in East County Thursday morning due to heavy snow.

All eastbound lanes of Interstate 8 were closed just past Alpine at East Willows Road around 8 a.m. due to the conditions, Caltrans said. By 11 a.m., the highway reopened, though a long line of traffic had backed up at the closure point. Vehicles started trickling through the area slowly.

A short time after announcing the I-8 closure, Caltrans said authorities were also closing eastbound state Route 78 and state Route 79 in the Santa Ysabel area due to the snow. That closure lasted until around 11:30 a.m.

Hitting the road? Make sure to check our live traffic map first.

Palomar Mountain had received about 10 inches of snow by 8 a.m. Thursday, according to the National Weather Service. Pine Valley reported snowfall of about 2 inches, with the Ranchita area receiving 4 inches of snow.

Steady rain was expected throughout San Diego County, NWS said, and snow levels were expected to drop to around 3,500 feet. Some light dusting was even spotted at elevations as low as Jamul.

Get your full forecast here.

SkyFOX flew over the snow and I-8 closure late Thursday morning:

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