The never ending rain has filled Sawpit Basin

Full drainage basin on Sawpit Creek

I got the tip off from a friend a bit further up the hill from me that the Sawpit Drainage Basin here in Monrovia is full.  I popped over on my way back from a few early morning errands and not only was it full, it was actually starting to drain off the spillway.  This the first time in several years (2005?) that that has happened here.  Then again, we’ve had a relentless 6 days of rain, and with my informal measuring system not too unlike Will Campbells, we have measured close to 17″ in the Foothills since it all started.

LA has been under a series of watches and warnings since it all started.  Today is being forewarned as the worst of the storm since it all started.  Details of watches/warnings affecting us all via Accuweather are HERE.

At the rate the rain is falling, I may wait for a lull in the activity and check out the ducks and their ponds along the San Gabriel River later this morning if I can make the time to do so.

Sawpit Spillway and drainage area.

San Gabriel River runs very full this week.

San Gabriel River looking south from Encanto Park bridge.

So much for JPL’s prediction earlier this fall for a La Nina winter punctuated with colder and dryer than usual conditions.  The rain that started on Friday has already dumped nearly 9 inches of rain on my corner of LA in the Foothills and looks to be worse. The Folks at the National Weather Service via the good folks at Accuweather has issued a flash flood watch until Thursday morning.  Its been reported there that we can expect more rain this week than we have received any other week in recent years.  How’s that for a La Nina?

In the brief lull from the rain this morning I took a walk along the San Gabriel River near Duarte.  The river is the highest its been in years and appears to be cutting a new channel not unlike what it did after the heavy rains in ’05.  The only critters out this morning were families of ducks in two large ponds that have formed in the river.

Where are your favorite places to enjoy the rain here in the LA area?  What’s your favorite rainy day song?  Enjoy my favorite after the last image.

Looking north from the bridge towards Azusa and Fish Canyons.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TzFnYcIqj6I[/youtube]

ICME: Thunderheads over The Valley

click to embiggen

Today was the official celebration of the end of summer vacation at my house and time for our annual trek to just screw around at Venice Beach.  Glorious day for it I tell you, barely 70’s and a nice stiff breeze off the ocean made for a break from the heat.

If the heat today seems worse than yesterday it should.  Those thunderheads over The Valley came about with the arrival of monsoonal moisture over the basin.   I just makes the heat a little more unbearable for those stuck inland.

Pic by me with the trusty cell cam.

Storm Watch 2010 – This Time It’s Personal

Below is a copy of the storm alert that was distributed by U.S. Geological Survey/Pacific Science Center. You gotta love a guy who closes a lengthy memo like this with, “In short,” (thanks to Karineh for the attachment):

“Currently, the strong El Nino is reaching its peak in the Eastern Pacific, and now finally appears to be exerting an influence on our weather.

The strong jet has been apparent for quite some time out over the open water, but the persistent block had prevented it from reaching the coast.  Now that the block has dissolved completely, a 200+ kt jet is barreling towards us.

Multiple large and powerful storm systems are expected to slam into CA from the west and northwest over the coming two weeks, all riding this extremely powerful jet stream directly into the state.

The jet will itself provide tremendous dynamic lift, in addition to directing numerous disturbances right at the state and supplying them with an ample oceanic moisture source. The jet will be at quite a low latitude over much of the Pacific, so these storms will be quite cold, at least initially. Continue reading “Storm Watch 2010 – This Time It’s Personal”

So, Los Angeles, how do you like your winter season?

Palm Trees outside Union Station
Palm Trees outside Union Station, photo taken by yours truly!

That’s right, guys. It’s now February and Los Angeles has now experienced maybe–maybe–two weeks worth of winter. According to the National Weather Service, yesterday was a wonderful 77 degrees in downtown Los Angeles, with the rest of our fine city peaking in the mid 80s. In the middle of winter.

How are you enjoying our notoriously fine weather?