As much as 18 inches of snow coated the Sierra Nevada Mountains on November 27 and 28, 2004, stranding thousands of holiday travelers. In this Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS), captured by NASA’s Aqua satellite on November 28, 2004, the mountains seem to have acted as a barrier to the storm, which moved in from the northwest, according to the National Weather Service. The east side of the mountains and the Great Desert Basin are white with snow, while the west side remains green. After this image was acquired, the storm moved east, blanketing Utah, Colorado, Wyoming and Nebraska with heavy snow.
NASA image courtesy Liam Gumley, University of Wisconsin-Madison from data acquired by direct broadcast at Oregon State University