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Slog sog continues: forecast calls for even more rain through March

Californians shouldn’t pack rain gear just yet. March is expected to continue to roar like a lion well beyond the middle of the month.

Models point to another possible atmospheric river in the first half of next week, forecasters say, on the 12th day of California’s rainy season. An upper-level low-pressure system in the Gulf of Alaska is expected to move over the West Coast, and there is a 60% chance that a column of atmospheric moisture from the river could affect the California coast, the Weather Service said. National.

The six- to 10-day precipitation forecast issued by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration on Wednesday shows well above normal precipitation for most of the state, with a 70% chance of above-normal precipitation. in central California.

For the water year, much of central California has received 150% to 200% of normal precipitation.

(Paul Duginski/Los Angeles Times)

A look at the percentage of normal precipitation since the beginning of the water year on October 1 shows the footprint of the 11 atmospheric rivers that have affected California so far this season. Parts of the state from the southern Bay Area to Point Conception and northeast to the Sierra Nevada have received 150% to 200% or more of normal precipitation. The area of ​​above-normal precipitation continues throughout the southern california bay to the Mexican border. In the deserts of southeastern California, rainfall is below normal.

California, with its Mediterranean climate, relies heavily on moisture stored in the state’s deep freeze, the high Sierra snowpack, during the dry summer months. Starting Wednesday, the average snow water equivalent – a measure of available water in snow – is 56 inches, which is 223% of normal for this date.

California’s rainy season is not over. And March might not go off like a lamb because the eight- to 14-day precipitation outlook through March 29 shows that most of the state north of Los Angeles has a chance for above-normal precipitation. From Los Angeles southward, the outlook is for normal precipitation, but extended outlooks show below-average temperatures across the state through the end of the month.