Weather

Frigid storm could bring snow to SLO County mountains next week

Snow covered hill north of San Marcos Road in Atascadero in 2009. That could happen again in the middle of this week.
Snow covered hill north of San Marcos Road in Atascadero in 2009. That could happen again in the middle of this week. jjohnston@thetribunenews.com

A frigid storm could turn San Luis Obispo County mountain ranges white next week.

“There definitely could be some snow on the Cuesta Grade by midweek,” PG&E meteorologist John Lindsey said Friday. “Get your camera ready for some good photo opportunities on the Santa Lucia Mountains.”

The weather system, which Lindsey called the “Yukon Express,” will bring rain and icy overnight temperatures down into the 20s on Tuesday and Wednesday. Snow levels could fall to as low as 1,250 feet, he said.

»» RELATED: Check out these photos of snow in SLO County.

As the skies clear Wednesday night into Thursday morning, the below-freezing temperatures will create frosty conditions in the inland valleys before the chill spreads into the coastal valleys next Thursday and Friday, when San Luis Obispo is forecast to hit a low of 31 degrees.

The midweek storm is anticipated to bring 0.25 to 0.75 inches of rainfall.

There definitely could be some snow on the Cuesta Grade by midweek. Get your camera ready for some good photo opportunities on the Santa Lucia Mountains.

John Lindsey, PG&E meteorologist

A few days later, a much wetter weather pattern will emerge, Lindsey said. A “Pineapple Express” jet stream will bring warmer temperatures from the southern part of the Pacific Ocean around the second weekend of the new year.

“The models show that Jan. 9, 10 and 11 should be very, very wet with mild temperatures,” Lindsey said. “It’s looking like it’s really going to dump.”

For this weekend, expect Saturday to be damp with light rainfall, followed by a sunny and mild Sunday. Highs should be in the 50s and 60s with overnight lows in the mid- to high 40s.

The light showers expected for New Year’s Eve should drop only a couple hundreds of an inch.

Downpours and large waves near the Pismo Beach Pier during the Friday, Dec. 23, 2016, rainstorm. According to the National Weather Service, Pismo Beach got 1.2 inches of rain.

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