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A strong low pressure trough will press south into Northern California this weekend, potentially bringing wetting rains to the northern third of the state.

Will it reach the North Bay area? That is much harder to predict. At this point it looks like a some showers may reach Mendocino and Lake Counties, and perhaps northern Sonoma County. But probably not much further south.

By Saturday and Sunday, this fairly deep low pressure system will reach Northern California. (Image 1)

The American GFS model, and the Canadian model forecast showers reaching Sonoma County late Saturday, and Sunday. (Images 2 and 3)

The Canadian is more bullish on rain chances, but holds off on rain for us until Sunday PM. The European shows the rain largely stalling out over Northern California. However the most recent model runs have trended wetter for Central California. (Image 4)


At this point it’s a case of battling model solutions. As we know so well in Northern California, models often pull back on rainfall amounts as the event draws nearer, especially early in the season. With that said, here are two rainfall predictions as of Tuesday. These will certainly change as the event nears.

The Canadian (Image 5) is definitely an outlier…DON’T expect this to happen. But we’d sure like it if it did. The GFS (Image 6) is perhaps more realistic. And the European model has been trending a bit wetter, pretty much in line with the GFS below. We’ll take anything we can get.

We will certainly have more clarity on this as the event grows nearer, and we’ll update this forecast as needed.

One additional note. As the deep low pressure center heads east into the Great Basin on Sunday and Monday the setup will become right for a moderate offshore wind event. It’s not a certainty, but we will be watching this closely over the coming days for a possible impact on the North Bay region.

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