Powerful storm expected to bring rain, snow to region

SAN DIEGO - A powerful storm is expected to wallop Southern California Monday and Tuesday, the National Weather Service said Sunday, with snow possible in the San Diego County mountains.

The storm is expected to roll in Monday afternoon. A Winter Storm Watch and High Wind Watch will be in effect in mountain areas through late Tuesday night.

Forecast | Interactive Radar

Snow levels are expected to remain above 8,000 feet throughout much of Southern California on Monday night -- too high to cause snowfall in the San Diego area -- but will drop rapidly to 5,000 feet by Tuesday afternoon, making snow possible in some areas that day.

Strong winds are predicted late Monday through Tuesday, with potential gusts on from 55 to 75 mph along desert slopes and below mountain passes, the NWS said.

Urban areas of San Diego County are predicted to be spared the worst of the storm, while a flash flood warning was issued for Los Angeles, Riverside and Orange counties.