2015-02-12 / Front Page

Long-term rain outlook offers optimism

Central California and Mariposa County have a 33 percent chance of seeing above-average precipitation through mid-April, this Feb. 15 map suggests. (NOAA | CONTRIBUTED)
Central California and Mariposa County have a 33 percent chance of seeing above-average precipitation through mid-April, this Feb. 15 map suggests. (NOAA | CONTRIBUTED) Monday, Feb. 16, 2015 - 3:15 p.m. - A long-lead rainfall forecast for the period ending in mid-April sees an above-normal chance of rain for Central California, a forecast released yesterday said.

A 50-60 percent chance exists that a mild El Nino may set up for the remainder of this winter and for the early spring period, another National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration forecast, released today, relates. Not directly related to El Nino, sea-surface temperatures that are three-to-four degrees above average off the West Coast could also help wring more rain from any storms that do reach the area, the report notes.

However, a shorter-term outlook for the next two weeks sees a less-than-average chance for rain across Central California. The reason is a dogged high-pressure system, dubbed the "ridiculously resilient ridge" by one commentator, that remains in place to divert any storms from the area.

Yet another weather report, released by the National Weather Service's Hanford office today, shows that Merced's seasonal rainfall total stood at 5.8 inches as of today. Its average for this point in the season is 7.3 inches. 

Earlier this month, Yosemite rangers pegged snowfall for the Merced River drainage at just 21 percent of average for Feb. 1.

Return to top

Post new comment

The content of this field is kept private and will not be shown publicly.
CAPTCHA
This question is for testing whether you are a human visitor and to prevent automated spam submissions.
By submitting this form, you accept the Mollom privacy policy.
Click here for digital edition
2015-02-12 digital edition