Southern California mountains see season’s first snow, with another storm forecast for next week
By Alex Dobuzinskis
In this Jan. 3, 2017, photo, a snowboarder rides down a trail near Camp Pendelton in San Diego County. The region, normally the first in the state to report a winter storm, has seen its first snowfall. In the past 24 hours, five inches of snow have fallen in Santa Clarita, Calif., where snow is so rare that a park ranger has to drive around the parking lot to keep people off the trails. (AP Photo/Gregory Bull)
SACRAMENTO, Calif. — When it snows and snows and snows on the mountains, it rarely melts until the next spring.
On Saturday morning, the first snow of the season fell in Southern California, the first since November. A storm system moving eastward in the West was expected to bring more snow to California and the Pacific Northwest next week.
If it isn’t already, it looks like there is at least a little hope for an early spring.
Northern California looks ready for more snow, with 5.5 inches reported in San Juan Capistrano and 6 in Santa Clarita. San Diego had some 4 inches of snow Saturday, according to the National Weather Service.
Even in the South, where February is usually the month’s warmest month, an inch of snow fell in Oxnard today, and forecasters called for more on Sunday.
It’s the first snow on the mountains of Santa Rosa, Santa Clarita, San Bernardino, Riverside and Los Angeles. The first snowfall on the Sierra peaks took place in the first half of November, when a strong cold front came through and brought an early snow.
“I’ve just been watching it for the last decade,” said Mark Thomas, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Placentia. “We rarely get snow on the mountains in December.”
A cold front and a warm front are forecast for Sunday, bringing more rain to the Sierra, while the high pressure in the Pacific will bring snow to the southern half of California.
“I think there’s still hope for a winter storm in the mountains,” said Mark Osterman, a forecaster