SAN DIEGO — Another bout of blustery weather is expected in San Diego County this week, according to the National Weather Service.
Satellite imagery Sunday morning showed a thick blanket of clouds covering Southern California. Weather officials say widespread rain showers are likely into the evening as a weak disturbance arrives.
Meanwhile, NWS says gusty winds are developing over the mountains and deserts. Southerly winds along the coast will turn westerly by Monday morning and weather officials predict a few showers to accompany the wind the shift.
Though precipitation is expected to be light Monday morning, NWS says the roads may be wet for morning commuters. Rain showers will continue east into the mountains during the day with drying over the coast and valleys. Those showers are expected to dissipate into Monday evening.
Come Tuesday, the blustery conditions are expected to impact the region, when an atmospheric river — currently over Hawaii — will arrive bringing heavy rains and mountain snowfall. The heaviest part of the storm will move through San Diego County Tuesday through Wednesday.
Thunderstorms are a possibility from Wednesday to Thursday.
Preliminarily storm precipitation estimates for Tuesday through Thursday are as follows: 1.5 to 3 inches west of the mountains; 2 to 5 inches in the mountains; one-fourth to 1 inch in the deserts.
Snow levels will start at about 5,000 feet and increase to about 5,500-6,500 feet Monday, according to NWS, before dropping to about 4,000 feet when the atmospheric river makes landfall Tuesday night.
When all is said and done Palomar Mountain could see anywhere from six to eight inches of snow. Meanwhile, Mount Laguna is expected to see anywhere from three to four inches.
Also in the forecast, strong winds are expected from the south then southwest. According to NWS, a High Wind Watch is in effect for most of Tuesday as “the event has the potential to be one of the stronger we have seen in recent memory.”
A Gale Watch will also go into effect starting late Monday night as strong winds are expected to develop over the coastal waters Tuesday morning, spreading inland. Weather officials warn that there is significant potential for damaging wind gusts along the coast, inland and especially over the mountains and deserts.
These winds, combined with heavy rain, will likely make travel difficult through Thursday, especially for high-profile vehicles. Drivers are encouraged to exercise caution.
Conditions with this storm and oversaturated ground could prompt trees to fall, power outages and flooding.
NWS forecasts a rapidly deepening surface cyclone approaching California’s central coast. The main storm center is expected to move across the central part of the state Wednesday and continue to drop through Southern California though Thursday morning.