A warm front that will arrive with drizzle and light rain late Wednesday night will continue into Thursday morning. That will be followed later Thursday by a cold front that will create moderate gale-force to fresh gale-force, 32 to 46 mph southerly winds, with gusts near 55 mph, along the coastline and moderate to heavy rain.
An upper-level trough will follow on Friday and continue to produce rain showers into Saturday morning. Total rainfall amounts are forecast to range between 1 and 2 inches throughout the Central Coast.
Periods of heavy snow are expected in the Sierra Nevada, with snow possible down in the Sierra foothills Friday and into Saturday as two additional waves of precipitation are expected through that period. Along the Central Coast, snow levels could drop to 2,000 feet.
Note: The system could tap into a plume of subtropical moisture, and precipitation amounts could become heavier with prolonged periods of moderate to heavy rain and mountain snow across California from late Wednesday into the weekend. The situation will need to be monitored closely for escalation.
Currently, it appears a ridge of high pressure will develop over the Central Coast next Sunday, Monday and Tuesday, producing gusty northeasterly Santa Lucia winds and dry conditions before the next chance for precipitation occurs around the middle of next week, followed by another chance of rain toward the end of next week.
Santa Ynez Temperatures
Thu Fri Sat Sun Mon Tue Wed
43/57 42/54 35/57 34/64 33/67 33/68 35/67
Pacific Ocean temperatures will range between 51 and 53 degrees through Sunday along the Central Coast.
Increasing southerly winds will generate a 5- to 7-foot southerly shallow-water seas Thursday morning, followed by an 8- to 10-foot northwesterly deep-water swell, with an 8- to 14-second period, Thursday afternoon and night.
That will increase to 11 to 13 feet, with an 8- to 15-second period, Friday into Saturday, decreasing Sunday.
Your Weekly PG&E Safety Tip
Rain showers combined with cold overnight temperatures in the inland valleys could cause black ice, sometimes called clear ice, a thin coating of ice on roads.
Practically invisible to motorists, it can produce an unexpected loss of traction. Drive with caution during the early morning hours, especially in shaded areas that receive little sunlight, until temperatures begin to rise.