Forecasters are calling for snow on Christmas evening at Lake Tahoe.

The National Weather Service in Reno issued a Winter Storm Watch on Tuesday for the Tahoe Basin that goes into effect Friday afternoon, Christmas, and lasts through Saturday morning.

The service said heavy snow is on its way and that 3-8 inches may fall at lake level and a foot or more above 7,000 feet. The snow will be accompanied by a strong wind that could reach over 85 mph, mainly in the Sierra.

The snow will make travel through the mountains difficult, especially over passes.

“Heavy snow and gusty winds could produce whiteout conditions at times,” the service said in a statement.

Officials advise motorists to carry an emergency kit with at least tire chains, extra food, water and clothing.

A second, colder storm is possible Sunday into early Monday, the service said, although it added that there is still uncertainty with the forecast.

The forecast for Wednesday and Thursday shows sunny to mostly sunny with high temperatures ranging from the low to uppers 40s.