New storm to bring yet more heavy snow to California

Another storm on the West Coast this weekend will bring more heavy snow to California amid a wet winter that has helped ease the widespread drought in the state.

The National Weather Service’s Weather Prediction Center expects that the storm will move southward across the Pacific Northwest into California on Saturday, bringing moderate to heavy precipitation along coastal areas and possible heavy snow in the Sierra Nevada and Cascade Mountain ranges. 

Several feet of snow are possible in the ranges, and the heaviest is most likely to fall in the northern Sierra Nevada. 

The precipitation will move inland on Sunday, and heavy snow will be possible at the higher elevations of the Intermountain West, according to the prediction center. The storm will then move east toward the Rocky Mountains before shifting northeastward into the Plains. 

It appears that the storm system will miss Southern California, where a storm last weekend brought frigid temperatures, strong winds, flooding and snow to Los Angeles. Tens of thousands of households in the area lost power, and the region only had a one-day break before another winter storm hit on Monday. 

Snowfall in the mountains east of the city also stranded many in their homes as their cars were buried and people did not have time to shovel themselves out before more snow came. 

But the storms have had a silver lining, as the precipitation has helped almost half of the state come out of its drought. Amid the rain and snow, moisture levels in the soil have increased, reservoirs have been replenished and snowpack, which provides about a third of the California’s water, has seen huge gains. State water officials said on Friday that the total snow water equivalent, or the amount of water stored in snowpack, was 44.7 inches, about 190 percent of the average amount for this time of year. 

The U.S. Drought Monitor showed on Thursday that only 49 percent of California was in drought conditions, while almost the entire state was experiencing drought three months ago.

Originally published at

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