Wet weather returns to western Nevada County | TheUnion.com

Wet weather returns to western Nevada County

Rain drops gather on the windshield of a vehicle making its way along Welsh Lane in Alta Sierra during Wednesday's intermittent rain showers.
Elias Funez/efunez@theunion.com

A rain-laden weather system could place Grass Valley into one of the top 10 wettest May’s after all is said and done, according to the National Weather Service.

“It is a little unusual having this much rain and snow in May,” NWS Meteorologist Hannah Chandler-Cooley said. “It’s definitely going to be a lot of rain, more than we’re used to for May.”

“Just looking at some of our longer term models, there is a chance that the kind of wet pattern will last through the following weekend, though the confidence is pretty low on that,” Chandler-Cooley said.

The wettest May on record topped in at 8.07 inches in 2005. The 10th wettest May was in 2010 and dropped 3.17 inches.

The current rain system is expected to drop 2 to 3 inches of rain through Friday, and a second system is expected to drop another 1 to 2 inches of rain Saturday and Sunday.

“The snow levels with the current system will probably be the lowest,” Chandler-Cooley said. “Probably down to 5,000 feet. The weekend snow levels will remain mostly above 6,000 feet.

Smaller amounts of rain and snow are forecast for Monday and Tuesday as well, though those amounts are expected to be minimal.

The unusual late May weather isn’t expected to create much of a flooding impact, according to Chandler-Cooley.

“Right now we’re not actually concerned about that. We had quite a few weeks of warm weather so a lot of that low elevation snow has already been melted,” Chandler-Cooley said.

“It’s not enough rain to cause significant snow melt before the rain turns to snow,” Chandler-Cooley said. “Because we had a dry stretch the soils are pretty dry and will soak up some of the rain we are getting.”

To contact Multimedia Reporter Elias Funez email efunez@theunion.com, or call 530-477-4230.

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