LAS VEGAS — A rare desert snowfall on Tuesday turned the Las Vegas Strip and the surrounding valley into a winter wonderland.
For the first time in five years, parts of Las Vegas received an inch or two of snow on cars, trees, sidewalks and roads, while rain mixed with snow flurries fell downtown and on the Strip.
A thin layer of snow blanketed the top of the Bellagio Hotel and Casino, turning its green roof a shade of winter white.
The Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area was closed on Tuesday because of snow and slippery roads. Authorities required snow tires or chains on vehicles traveling in the Spring Mountains and near Mt. Charleston.
Snow is rare in Las Vegas, where 2 to 3 inches last fell on Dec. 6, 1998, said Steve Downs, a National Weather Service forecaster.
As the winter storm moved east on Tuesday, a new weather disturbance was bearing down on Nevada.
A winter storm watch was posted Tuesday in the mountains for New Year's Eve and New Year's Day. Forecasters said snow was likely through Friday in the mountains around the Reno area.