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Dry weather with breezy north to east winds through today. Temperatures warming to near average with continued cold nights. Cold overnight temperatures could threaten pets, plants, and people.
Clear skies, with offshore flow, cover the region early this morning as upper level ridging moves in. Surface pressure gradient is maxing out currently around 10-11 mbs from RNO to SAC and around 7 mbs MFR to SAC. The strong northeast gradient is resulting in gusty northeast to east wind across the foothills and west slopes of the northern Sierra where gusts from 25-35 mph are occurring (local gusts of 40-60 mph are occurring at the usual windy spots near gaps in terrain, west facing canyons and exposed ridges). Along the west side of the Sacramento Valley, gusts of 15-25 mph are occurring, and some local gusts of 20-30 mph are present in the foothills of the Coast Range.
Winds are lighter along the eastern half of the Sacramento Valley and south into the northern San Joaquin Valley, and some areas of frost will once again be possible in these areas around sunrise with dew points in the upper 20s to lower 30s.
Dry and mild weather will continue today as high pressure strengthens over the area. Winds will slacken later this morning and through the afternoon as surface pressure gradient relaxes.
A system will pass to our east later Thursday into Friday and will bring some high clouds to the area. This trough will push into the Great Basin on Friday and will bring increased onshore flow in its wake with the strongest winds over the mountains.
North winds will help to bring slightly warmer daytime highs again today, and then some cooling is expected on Thursday. Valley temperatures will warm a bit again on Friday with a return of north winds, but the northern Sierra will see cooling with northeast to east flow. Cold overnight lows continue throughout the period with areas of frost likely in the mornings for wind- sheltered lower elevations.
Extended Discussion (Sunday through Wednesday)
Dry weather will continue into early next week under the upper level ridge. Uncertainty increases Tuesday as models are still struggling with the placement, timing, and strength of a potential trough. Currently, its looking the best chance for light precipitation will be across far northern California Monday night and Tuesday. It`s still looking like better potential for more widespread precipitation returns toward the end of next week. Temperatures will be close to average.