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Short and long range models are heading in a dry direction for the North Bay, with fading hopes for significant rains through the first half of February. Thankfully, big rains in late December and January will keep most of the state above normal for the next few weeks.


High pressure has set up in the Northeast Pacific, blocking storms from moving into California. (Images 1 and 2)

A weak cold front will drop south over land on Sunday, bringing a shot of cold air, but only an outside chance of showers to the North Bay. (Image 3) There will be some light snow in the Sierra.


It probably won’t be completely dry, but a cool, mainly dry pattern is setting up for California in February, with low pressure over the intermountain west and high pressure out in the northeast Pacific. (Image 4) This may block storms from the west from reaching us.

Major models suggest we could see below average rainfall for the month. (Image 5)

But, below average doesn’t mean completely dry. The GFS model brings a few storms far enough south to give us some rain by the 12th…but as you can see, we’ll likely be on the southern edge of the storm track. (Image 6)

The longer range seasonal outlooks don’t offer much useful guidance. These are the same models that mostly missed the parade of storms we experienced in late December and January.

At this point we’re still technically in a La Nina winter, transitioning toward a neutral or El Nino springtime pattern. So, I would remain optimistic that after a typical mid-winter dry spell, that rain will return. The question is when.

We’ll keep you posted on the latest trends.


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