Showers return today and continue through Wednesday, heaviest Tuesday, with afternoon thunderstorms possible. Accumulating snowfall is expected above 4000 feet. There will be some gusty southerly winds today. The cool and unsettled weather pattern continues into next week.
Satellite imagery shows cloud enhancement taking place just offshore as the cold deep closed low approaches central California. Radar indicates isolated showers are currently developing out ahead of the system across the southern half of the forecast area while more widespread precipitation remains offshore.
Conditions will deteriorate this morning as widespread light to moderate rain spreads up from the south, snow develops across the northern Sierra, and southeasterly winds pick up across much of the region.
Southeast winds will increase for areas to the south and east of Sacramento as the surface low nears the coast, and a wind advisory has been posted for the northern San Joaquin Valley and Motherlode into this evening.
This system will bring lower snow levels than in recent storms, around 3000-5000 feet. The heaviest amounts for northern interior California will be in the Sierra south of US Highway 50, where 1 to 2 feet of snow is possible above 6000 feet.
A Winter Weather Advisory is in effect until 5 am PDT Wednesday, with delays in travel likely at times. Gusts to 45 mph are possible and along with the snow could bring some reduction in visibility at times.
Cool and unsettled weather will linger Wednesday as the low drifts into central California. Some lingering showers will be possible late in the week, especially over the mountains.
Extended Discussion (Saturday through Tuesday)
Longwave trough along the West Coast over the weekend with embedded short waves. This will keep a threat of showers, mainly over the mountains.
Next deep short wave drops into the longwave late Sunday into Monday causing it to retrograde offshore. Deterministic models showing bulk of associated precip remaining west of the CWA Mon/Tue while NBM showing a wetter solution.