Snow and rain showers will continue through Wednesday as the latest in a series of winter storms leaves Southern California before slightly warmer, drier weather heads into the weekend, according to forecasts.
Wednesday morning’s snow and ice conditions led to the closure of Interstate 5 by the Grapevine, according to the California Department of Transportation.
There is no indication of when the highway will reopen, as the California Highway Patrol is clearing stalled large trucks around Tejon Pass and surrounding areas.
Much of the area around the Grapevine in Kern County is under a winter storm warning that will be in effect until 10 p.m. Wednesday, according to the National Weather Service. The warning extends to the interior valleys of San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara counties.
Cold winds, rain and snow will continue to sweep across Southern California on Wednesday and gradually ease by Thursday, according to forecasts.
“We should be dry for the next few days,” said meteorologist Mike Wofford of the National Weather Service office in Oxnard.
It will be dry in Los Angeles from Thursday, with temperatures reaching 60 degrees in some areas. Temperatures are still low for this time of the season, Wofford said, but anyone stepping foot outside will notice the difference after the long cold snap.
“It’ll still be chilly out there,” Wofford said.
After a dry spell Thursday through Saturday for Los Angeles, Santa Barbara and Ventura counties, rain could return early next week, according to forecasts.
Further inland, the ongoing weather in the San Bernardino Mountains is expected to ease after large amounts of snowfall in recent days, blocked mountain roads and stranded residents.
The Lake Arrowhead area saw just over 77 inches of snow over a seven-day period, according to meteorologist Samantha Connolly of the National Weather Service office in San Diego.
“That area could see some more snow next week, but nothing as big as the drop that happened during the last storm that passed through,” Connolly said.
Road workers with Caltrans had to cancel their plans Wednesday morning to escort residents up the San Bernardino Mountains. Heavy snow has prevented drivers from getting up the mountain, even with chains on their tires. Caltrans said.
“We are working to clear the roadway as soon as possible to resume counseling residents for the next window,” the agency wrote on Facebook.