Sheriff's Office

PR #:
Date Issued:
Mar 01, 2024 - 3:19PM

For Immediate Release

Washoe County Sheriff’s Office Reminds Drivers Not to Use Dog Valley Road to Bypass I-80 Closures

For media inquiries contact:
Sgt. Kristin Vietti
Washoe County Sheriff's Office
Office: 775-328-6336
Cell: 775-895-0027

With heavy snow forecast for the Sierra this weekend, the Washoe County Sheriff’s Office issues an important warning to drivers: Dog Valley Road/Henness Pass Road is not a safe alternative route should Interstate 80 close.

Too often, tourists or unfamiliar travelers in the High Sierra attempt to bypass I-80 closures using GPS, unknowingly endangering themselves.

Both roads, north of Stampede Reservoir, are narrow dirt lanes linking California State Route 89 to Verdi, Nevada. While picturesque in summer, winter paints a different picture. Steep mountain slopes line the north, while a drainage ditch hugs the south, turning hard-packed snow into treacherous ice, causing accidents and stranding drivers.

The safety of travelers on our region's roads is paramount to the Sheriff's Office. Please avoid using this alternative route during I-80 closures and respect area road closures.


The Washoe County Sheriff's Office is dedicated to preserving a safe and secure community with professionalism, respect, integrity and the highest commitment to equality. Sheriff Darin Balaam is the 27th person elected to serve as the Sheriff of Washoe County since the Office was created in 1861. The Washoe County Sheriff's Office strives to ensure public safety by building trust and creating partnerships within the diverse communities in which we serve. We will promote the dignity of all people supported by our words and actions through open communication while fostering an environment of professionalism, integrity and mutual respect.


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