A winter storm that passed over the Central Coast on Wednesday morning is a precursor to wetter conditions to come, according to forecasters.
“A more powerful storm is expected to affect the region late tonight into early Saturday, bringing the potential for heavy rain, mountain snow and gusty winds,” said a forecast from the Oxnard office of the National Weather Service.
Wednesday’s cold front passed over the area about 6:45 a.m. with moderate rainfall, said local forecaster John Lindsey. Many locations in San Luis Obispo County recorded between one-third and 11⁄4 inches, he said.
The second, more vigorous storm is expected to stall over the county today and Friday and tap into a plume of subtropical moisture. Coastal valleys in the county can expect from an inch to 21⁄2 more inches of rain, with higher totals along coastal mountains, Lindsey said.
This rainfall comes at a time of high surf and tides, raising the possibility of localized coastal flooding. Waves as big as 14 feet are forecast through today, and a high tide of 6.2 feet will occur at 8:30 a.m.
In time for the weekend, clearing is expected Saturday afternoon through Monday. A third storm from the Gulf of Alaska will arrive Monday night into Tuesday with another period of wind and rain.
Periodic wet weather is expected through the end of the month and into early March, Lindsey said.
Reach David Sneed at 781-7930.