A cold system out of the gulf of Alaska will generate some showers Wednesday and Thursday in Southern California, but the big story will be a fresh coat of late spring snow for the region’s mountains.
The snow level will be at 4,500 feet Wednesday, then lower to 2,500-3,000 feet Wednesdaynight and Thursday. Expect 2-4 inches above 6,000 feet but 1-2 inches across the Grapevine section of the 5 Freeway north of Los Angeles.
“We already have some snow falling near Frazier Park,” NBC4 forecaster Belen De Leon said Wednesday morning. “This will be an area that will be impacted hugely because of that storm.”
A dusting is expected across the Antelope Valley foothills, including Highway 138 on Thursday.
Wind gusts of 45 miles per hour are expected Wednesday, diminishing to 40 mph on Thursday. The storm could cause travel delays and road closures, strong crosswinds, low visibility in blowing snow, and icy roads.
“That may pose a problem for you in the mountains and in the deserts if you’re traveling out there in some icy conditions,” said De Leon “I think that’s the biggest impact with this storm moving into our area.”
Not much rain is expected during the upcoming storm. Most areas will see light showers.
The storm brings the latest round of precipitation during what has been a wet March in California following a winter dry spell. About 75 percent of the state remains abnormally dry with moderate drought across about 47 percent of California, according to the most recent drought monitor report.
Those figures will likely improve when the weekly monitor update is released Thursday morning.
Temperatures will be chilly. Mostly cloudy skies are forecast in LA County Wednesday with highs of 40 on Mount Wilson; 55 in Lancaster; 56 in Palmdale; 57 in Saugus; 60 in Woodland Hills, San Gabriel and Burbank; 61 in Pasadena and Avalon; 64 in Long Beach and at LAX; and 65 in downtown LA. Thursday’s forecast in LA County is for showers and slightly lower temperature, followed by sunny skies and slightly warmer temperatures on Friday.
Partly cloudy skies are forecast in Orange County, along with highs of 38 on Santiago Peak; 50 on Ortega Highway at 2,600 feet; 55 at Fremont Canyon; 56 at Trabuco Canyon; 59 in Laguna Beach and Yorba Linda; 60 in Mission Viejo and San Clemente; 62 in Newport Beach, Fullerton and Anaheim; and 63 in Irvine. Roughly the same temperatures are expected Thursday amid more partly cloudy skies.