April showers on tap for Nevada County | TheUnion.com

April showers on tap for Nevada County

Skateboarders take to the 'crete at Condon Skatepark in Grass Valley during Tuesday's warm weather. High's reached around 70 in and around western Nevada County, though forecasters are calling for lower temperatures and thunderstorms by the end of the week.

Enjoy the warm, dry weather while you can, because today is the last day of above-average temperatures and partly sunny skies before the deluge begins.

According to the National Weather Service, a wet, warm "Pineapple Express" storm system from Hawaii will impact northern California during the latter half of the week and into the coming weekend. The heaviest precipitation is expected during the Friday night-Saturday morning time frame. The rain is expected to start Thursday night, becoming heavy by Friday afternoon and tapering off late Sunday morning.

The warm and wet storm will likely increase snow melt runoff, especially at the lower mountain elevations, the weather service warned.

On Tuesday, an early estimate on total rainfall amounts was 2 to 8 inches in the foothills and the mountains. Grass Valley is set to receive between 4-5 inches in total from Thursday through Sunday, the weather service said. Snow levels (above passes) were forecast to be high for most of the event, with accumulating snow mainly above 8,000 feet until late Saturday or Sunday, when snow levels lower to around 5,000 feet over the Sierra.

Periods of gusty southerly winds of as much as 50-60 mph or higher were expected in the mountains Friday and Saturday.

Impacts of the storm could include localized flooding, as well as mud and rock slides, the weather service said.

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Contact reporter Liz Kellar at 530-477-4236 or by email at lizk@theunion.com.