After days of summer-like heat, a cold system dropping in from the Gulf of Alaska is bringing cooler temperatures and a little rain to Southern California on Tuesday.
Temperatures in the area will dip into the 50s and 60s, forecasters said — marking a dramatic swing from record-daily highs set only days ago, including 88 degrees in Burbank and 85 degrees at LAX on Super Bowl Sunday.
Tuesday’s cooler temperatures will be a return to normal for this time of year, according to Mike Wofford, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Oxnard. The average high temperature for the date is about 66 degrees.
“Our big high-pressure ridge from last week is gone, and we have a cold, low-pressure system that’s working its way south through the state,” Wofford said. “It will be basically right overhead this afternoon.”
Along with cooler air, the system is expected to bring some light showers and even a chance of snow in mountain areas. Rainfall amounts should be less than one-third of an inch, but local amounts up to half an inch are possible in areas with heavier showers, the National Weather Service reported.
A winter weather advisory has been issued for portions of the Los Angeles County mountains through 10 pm, with total snow accumulations of 5 inches possible above 5,000 feet and winds of up to 50 mph.
Up to 1 inch of snow could accumulate over the Grapevine by the afternoon.
Well this will be a change. A winter storm will drop into southwest CA on Tue bringing a few showers and much cooler conditions. It will be windy, especially in the mtns where snow accumulations will occur mainly above 3500 ft. #CAwx #LAweather pic.twitter.com/niZouUEJO7
— NWS Los Angeles (@NWSLosAngeles) February 14, 2022
Though the cool-down marks a turnabout after a week-long heat wave, it will be short-lived. By Thursday and Friday, temperatures will climb back into the 70s, with yet another dry Santa Ana wind event likely to blow through, forecasters said.
The winds last week helped fuel a pair of unseasonable Southern California fires, including the 150-acre Emerald fire near Laguna Beach and the 7-acre Sycamore fire, which destroyed two homes near Whittier.
Though Los Angeles’ precipitation is slightly above average for the water year, almost all of that moisture came during December’s storms.
January and February — the height of Southern California’s rainy season — have proved troublingly dry, leading some officials to express concern that fire conditions are shifting from seasonal to year-round.
Fortunately, Wofford said, the weather on Wednesday — the day of the much-anticipated Rams Super Bowl championship parade in the Exposition Park area — should be pleasantly unremarkable.
“It should be clear skies and quite nice,” he said. “I don’t think the weather is going to be anything people are going to be talking about.”