Clouds, Cool Temps, Light Rain – NBC Los Angeles

A break between storms ends Sunday as a weak system moves into southern California.

What does that mean for the Los Angeles Marathon?

Participants and fans lining the 26.2-mile Stadium to the Stars course can expect clouds, cool temperatures and the possibility of light rain and drizzle throughout the day.

“Really nothing that’s going to accumulate too much, but if it does rain a drop or two, don’t be surprised,” said the NBC4 meteorologist. Shanna Mendiola.

The LA Marathon starts at 7 am at Dodger Stadium. The course visits various Los Angeles neighborhoods as it winds its way through Hollywood and ends in Century City.

Sunday’s system sets the stage for a much stronger storm later in the week. Light rain arrives on Monday, the official start of spring, before heavier showers on Tuesday and Wednesday. Moderate to heavy rain is expected Tuesday afternoon to persist through Wednesday.

Preliminary Rain Totals

  • Coast and Valleys: 1 to 3 inches
  • Foothills and mountains: 2 to more than 3 inches of rain

“This system is going to be colder and bring a significant amount of rain and mountain snow,” Mendiola said.

Snow levels are expected to drop to 3,000 feet Tuesday night and to mountain pass level Wednesday morning. Two inches of snow is possible on the Grapevine section of the 5 Freeway in northern Los Angeles County.

“I know it’s been a pretty busy season so far, but you can bet this will help with our dry conditions,” Mendiola said. “We have already seen significant improvement.”

A large swath of California’s agricultural Central Valley is no longer in drought after a series of winter storms fed by atmospheric rivers brought rain and snow over the past two months.

At the start of the hydrological year in late September, the Central Valley was one of several regions facing extreme to exceptional drought, the two most severe drought categories in the US Drought Monitor weekly report.

But the most recent report issued on Thursday shows a stark contrast.

Thirty-six percent of the state is in moderate drought, the least severe of the four drought categories in the weekly report. At the start of the hydrological year at the end of September, that figure was 99.76 percent.

Only 8 percent of California experiences severe drought, a significant improvement from 93 percent at the beginning of the water year.

The most recent Drought Monitor report includes data available up to the morning of March 14, so it does not take into account rainfall for the remainder of Tuesday and Wednesday. Rainfall from that storm will be included in next week’s report.