Breezy-bright sunshine and rolling, blustery clouds this near-noon Wednesday on California’s north coast.
The rainstorm from last night gone this morning — leaving a small, barely-damp footprint, and a clear, sparkling sunrise.
Photo at the right is a sky-shot off my back patio a little-bit earlier, an overall epitome-picture of the weather around my abode today.
Comparatively/objectively speaking, sweet-autumn.
Yet a not-so-auspicious start to our rainy season, facing the fourth year of drought. Accordingly, the whole state is seeking after a massive winter storm season, especially in the snowfall variety — rain’s not bad, but we need the snowpack to fill reservoirs. And the good rain will get a punch from a supposedly “super El Niño” grinding toward us right now.
A fairly-well detailed piece Saturday on our El Niño effect from Santa Rosa’s Press Democrat.
Keynote for northern California:
No one wants a deluge, and it wouldn’t take one to make a big dent in the drought, according to Tom Di Liberto, a meteorologist at the National Weather Service’s Climate Prediction Center.
In a blog at Climate.gov titled “How deep of a precipitation hole is California in?” Di Liberto said much of the state is missing at least one year’s worth of precipitation over the past four years.
The amount varies widely by region, from the North Coast, the state’s wettest, at 50 inches in arrears, to the arid southeast with an 8-inch rain deficit.
The South Coast, including Los Angeles, faces a 32-inch deficit, which amounts to nearly two years worth of rain.
That deficit is “not so much a hole as a giant chasm,” Di Liberto said.
He also defined a drought-ending threshold as getting out of the bottom 20 percent of five-year accumulated rainfall, which also varies by region.
The North Coast needs 135 percent of normal rainfall by the end of September 2016 to meet the threshold and would need the 11th wettest October-to-September period since 1928 to get there.
“It’s not out of the realm of possibility during a strong El Niño,” he said in an interview.
“It’s still a lot to ask.”
Caption on the photo above comes via Miss Emily Dickinson, “A Curious Cloud Surprised The Sky”
A curious Cloud surprised the Sky,
’Twas like a sheet with Horns;
The sheet was Blue—
The Antlers Gray—
It almost touched the lawns.
So low it leaned—then statelier drew—
And trailed like robes away,
A Queen adown a satin aisle
Had not the majesty.
Sometimes surprises are a shit scene…