Here is this week’s weather forecast by PG&E meteorologist John Lindsey.
A persistent ridge of high pressure that produced relentless night and morning Santa Lucia (northeasterly-offshore) winds, which helped to make this past January one of the warmest and driest on record, will weaken this week.
Gentle to moderate (8- to 18-mph) southerly winds are expected to start tonight and will continue through Thursday. These onshore winds will produce higher dew-point temperatures, which will allow night and morning marine low clouds to develop in our coastal regions this evening through Thursday. This condition will also produce gradually cooler daytime highs and warmer overnight lows.
Confidence is increasing in regards to a formation of an atmospheric river toward the end of the week, which will bring widespread moderate to heavy rainfall to Northern California as early as Thursday night. The associated cold front is expected to bring strong to gale-force (25- to 38-mph) southerly winds along the Central Coast and rain to San Luis Obispo County later Friday.
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Rain is expected to move into northern Santa Barbara County by Saturday. Details regarding timing and strength continue to evolve; however, given the mild nature of the subtropical moisture, snow levels are expected to remain high. Between 0.25 and 1.25 inches of rain is forecast between Friday night into Sunday. Some locations in Northern California, however, could get more than 12 inches of rain.
Strong to gale-force (25- to 38-mph) northwesterly winds off the California coast will generate a 4- to 6-foot (300-degree, deep-water) sea and swell (with a 5- to 15-second period) today through Tuesday. A 3- to 5-foot west-northwesterly (285-degree, deep-water) swell (with an 8- to 13-second period) is expected to develop along our coast Wednesday into Thursday.
Combined with the northwesterly swell will be 1- to 2-foot southerly (180-degree, shallow-water) seas Thursday. These seas will build to 3 to 5 feet (with a 3- to 6-second period) Friday and will remain at this height and period through Sunday.
An 8- to 10-foot westerly (265-degree, deep-water) swell (with a 13- to 15-second period) will arrive along the Central Coast on Friday, increasing to 9 to 11 feet with the same
period Saturday into next Monday.
Seawater temperatures will range between 58 and 60 degrees through Sunday.
PG&E safety tip
Driving in the rain, slow down! It takes longer to stop or adjust in wet weather. Stay toward the middle lanes — water tends to pool in the outside lanes and don’t follow large trucks or buses too closely. The spray created by their large tires reduces your vision. Before it starts to rain, replace old or brittle wipers.