Apr 5, 2017

Unusually strong April storm headed for Northern California this week

Sacramento, CA
USA
by
Daniel Swain
,
California Weather Blog
The Thursday/Friday storm will be associated with an impressive April atmospheric river. Image: NCEP via UCSD
The Thursday/Friday storm will be associated with an impressive April atmospheric river. Image: NCEP via UCSD

After a record wet winter across much of Northern California (and a less impressive but still above average winter in Southern California), March was a relatively dry month across most of the state. This was especially true across the southern third of California, where little to no significant precipitation occurred amidst warmer than average temperatures. These relatively early spring-like conditions not only mean that Sierra snowmelt season is in full swing, but also have combined with prodigious winter rains to produce spectacular wildflower displays across southern and central California.

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Despite the warm and relatively dry interlude over the past few weeks, it now appears quite likely that winter-like weather conditions will return rather suddenly over the next couple of days. Northern California will be in the crosshairs of an unusually powerful late-season Pacific storm system from Thursday into the weekend.