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Grass to stay greener

San Luis Obispo County residents need to prepare for both rain and cold temperatures today as a storm system comes into the area from Northern California.

John Lindsey, a local weather forecaster and media relations official for Pacific Gas and Electric Co., said the storm system will mix cold air from the upper atmosphere with warmer air near the Earth’s surface. As a result, there is a chance of thunderstorms.

The National Weather Service is adding the possibilities of hail and even water spouts off the coast to its forecast.About a half inch to an inch of rain is expected along the coast and interior; 1.5 inches could fall at higher elevations, the forecasts say.

If San Luis Obispo gets more than a half-inch, the city will most likely surpass the historical average total for rain received in a season. The city averages 24.36 inches of precipitation per season (seasons begin on July 1 and end on June 30). As of Monday, the city had already gotten 23.67 inches of rain in the 2009-10 season.

Exceeding the normal rainfall amount will bring an end to the three-year drought that has gripped the region.

High temperatures today will be in the 40s in the North County and low 50s in San Luis Obispo and along the coast.

It is possible that snow could fall on the higher peaks of the county tonight, as the snow level will drop to about 2,000 feet. Lows tonight will drop into the 30s.

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