Major storm coming Thursday!

Dec 8, 2014 9:58 PM by Kris Kuyper

We saw a few showers Monday around the North State, but Tuesday looks mostly cloudy and dry.

Wednesday will be mostly cloudy as well, and we'll notice the south winds picking up in the afternoon to 25 mph. That's in advance of our big storm coming Wednesday night and Thursday!

A nice plume of moisture will set up off the California coast Wednesday. A surface low will develop well off of San Francisco and deepen rapidly as it heads to the northern Oregon coast. This is a very favorable pattern for us to see strong winds... Very similar patterns were in place when we had the December 1995 windstorm and the January 2008 windstorm. Both of those storms generated widespread 60 mph south wind gusts in the Valley (the December 95 storm kicked up gusts to 80 mph in Redding!) This low will be off of Eureka by early Thursday morning, and that's when the winds should be strongest over us. Look for widespread 60 mph gusts in the Valley, with slightly higher gusts near Redding! As the low continues northward through Thursday, the winds will diminish through the rest of the day Thursday. We didn't see a significant windstorm last year, so there may be a few extra loose tree branches that may come down Thursday... power outages are possible.

The rain should get going late Wednesday, and this is a very dynamic storm. We should be able to squeeze 1" to 3" of rain in the Valley from it, with the rain being heavy at times. The rain will finally turn to showers by Friday, and the winds will be much lighter by then. The weekend looks nice and dry.

Snow levels will be around 5000' Thursday, then drop to near 4000' by Thursday night as the cold air filters in. By then, the majority of the wet weather will have passed... But travel will still be tricky.


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