BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KGET) — A strong storm system is dropping south from the Gulf of Alaska and will begin to impact northern California starting today.
Precipitation has been streaming inland across the northern part of the state overnight, but rain amounts have been light so far. Rain will begin to move in over the Sierra Nevada around Yosemite this afternoon but will be slow to move south. The precipitation will mainly be from Fresno County northward through Monday afternoon then become more widespread.
A surge of higher precipitable water and increased dynamics will bring periods of moderate to heavy rain and mountain snow Monday evening through Tuesday north of Kern County.
A Winter Storm Warning is in effect for the Sierra Nevada from 4 a.m. Monday through 10 p.m. Tuesday.
Snow accumulations of 2 to 5 feet above 5,000 feet are expected and isolated amounts of 6 to 8 feet are possible over the higher elevations areas.
Snow levels will be above the major pass levels in Kern County for most of the event but will lower Tuesday. 1-3” of snow is possible along the Grapevine and Tehachapi Pass Tuesday afternoon. Again, the big variable is how much moisture is still hanging around the area when snow levels drop. The amount of rain in the Valley will likely be very sporadic due to the rain shadowing in some areas, including Bakersfield.
Rain amounts around Bakersfield will generally range from half an inch to 1 inch. The Kern Desert will also experience the typical rain shadowing effect but could still receive a quarter inch to half an inch.
Precipitation should end Tuesday night with Wednesday expected to be dry but chilly. A weaker system may bring more wet weather Wednesday night through Thursday and possibly into Friday.
We will keep a close eye on this storm development.
Today’s high will be in the high 50’s possibly making it to 59 degrees just after midday.