Heavy rain on the way

Mar 9, 2016 10:38 PM by Kris Kuyper

We saw a few showers around the North State on Wednesday, but heavier rain will arrive Thursday... and last through this weekend!

A weak storm moved through the North State today, and brought us a few showers... but not much. That will change in a big way tomorrow! An Atmospheric River (or Pineapple Express), which is a plume of moisture from the subtropics, will surge into northern California on Thursday. That will bring us a LOT of warm rain! That plume will hang around through Friday, and the rain totals should really add up after a couple of days. South winds will pick up, but won't get as strong as last Saturday night. Still 25 to 35 mph gusts can be expected through this weekend.

The Atmospheric River finally gets pushed east on Saturday, and we'll see a brief lull in the wet weather. Rain will return Saturday night. Models are forecasting another lull during the day Sunday, but more rain Sunday night, lasting into Monday morning.

This will be warm rain (it's from the subtropics, after all) so snow levels will be around 6000' through Friday... rather high. The snow level should drop closer to 5000' by this weekend.

Rainfall totals should be VERY impressive! Models are forecasting 3" to 5" of rain in the Valley between now and Monday morning! MUCH higher amounts are heading into the mountains, with 5" to 10" amounts common in the Sierra Nevada. The ground is already saturated after last weekend's rain... Some flooding is possible!

Lake Oroville just reached the 800' elevation for the first time since August of 2013. It will continue to fill significantly over the next week!

Next week is looking dry. After all the rain to begin the month of March, and possible localized flooding this weekend... that looks to be a good thing.


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