It may not be as bad as last week, but a new atmospheric river storm hits the West Coast and Bay Area, bringing in another much-needed dose of rain.
After two dry winters in a row, which have lowered reservoirs to low levels unseen in decades and caused some restrictions on water use, a series of storms over the past two weeks have given a glimmer of hope for this monsoon season.
A second atmospheric river – a narrow moisture-laden storm – is expected to arrive late Sunday in two weeks and bring extensive rainfall to the Bay Area Monday through Tuesday evening, followed by extended rains on Wednesday. But a mild atmospheric river storm is predicted, a 1 on the UC San Diego Center for Western Weather and Extreme Weathers scale from 1 to 5, with 5 being the strongest.
“It’s not as big as the last one,” said National Weather Service meteorologist Matt Mele. “Beneficial rain. We are still in drought, but any rain we get will be very necessary. Anything we have to fill the tanks is good news. “
The atmospheric river on October 24 was the worst storm in recent years.
This storm was rated 5 on the central scale. In 24 hours, San Francisco received 4.05 inches of rain, the wettest October day on record and the fourth wettest day on record since the 1849 gold rush. Over the weekend, San Jose received 50% more rainfall than the entire previous year. In East Bay, a foot fell during a week at Tilden Park in Berkeley and on the summit of Mount Diablo. Marin County was 26 inches above Mount Tamalpais.
The next storm could bring one to two inches of rain to the valleys of the North Bay, and two to four inches is expected in the mountains and coastal mountains. Anywhere in the bay area, it could rain from a quarter of an inch to three-quarters of an inch.
Dry weather is expected to follow the storm. Bryden Murdoch, a meteorologist with the meteorological service, said the forecast models do not show rain until at least November 15.
“After it rained at the beginning of the week, a little high pressure started to form off the coast from us, and it is very difficult for us to see the rain,” Murdoch said. “It’s actually more of a distraction to the north.”
While the storm will bring much-needed rains to the region, Murdoch said, parts of the Bay Area are not expected to exceed their historical averages for November.
“At best, we’re still looking for 1 to 2 inches,” Murdoch said.
California is still experiencing severe drought after two dry winters in a row. The storm on October 24 also lifted widespread fears of wildfires in the region.
“The October rains have really improved the conditions when it comes to fires,” Mehle said. “The threat of the spread of forest fires is currently unlikely.”
Monday and Tuesday are expected to be “chilly,” but Mele said the winds will not be as “destructive” as the October storm system. On Monday evenings and Tuesday gusts of wind can range from 5 to 15 miles per hour, while in coastal areas and in the mountains, winds blow between 30 and 40 miles per hour.
For the next few days the temperature will be “seasonally cool”, and on Friday and Saturday the temperature will be 60-70 degrees. Monday will be cooler “across the board,” with temperatures generally around 60 degrees, and Tuesday between 50 and 60 degrees.
Staff writers Paul Rogers and Jason Green contributed to this report.