February 15, 2017 at 8:08 pm

Major Pacific Storm Lucifer; Details: Strong Pacific Storm Aims Southern California On Friday; Saturday For Some

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The next name on the Southern California Weather Force list is Lucifer, it for that name he’ll certainly pack a major punch.  With areas Ventura north and westward starting as early as Thursday, the strongest effects will be on Friday for the metros and high desert areas and Saturday in the Eastern Deserts.  The SCWF Flood Watch is in place.

Timing is scattered but I’ll do my best in explaining it.  Prefrontal rainfall ahead of the system will be likely as early as Thursday for Ventura, Santa Barbara, Kern, and San Luis Obispo County… with SLO/Vandenberg starting first and Ventura by later afternoon or evening.  Los Angeles will get the eastern most part of the prefrontal activity Thursday night. This is not even the main frontal zone so as it is raining on Thursday in these areas, don’t think this is the bulk of the system.

That becomes realized on Friday when the front slams the area.  Given this, the main front hits areas west of Los Angeles on Friday during the day/evening … with Los Angeles south and eastward getting hit during the early night hours before midnight.  Widespread 2-4″ of rain looks likely in all metro areas …

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The wind with the system will be very strong in all areas for the most part.  Wind out of the Southeast will cause gusty winds to even hit Bakersfield, as they roar out of the Gorman Pass.  This is due to the storm having a stronger surface low west of the area at the time, which causes the wind to move toward the center of the lowest pressure.  Wind gusts could easily each 30-50 mph in the Kern regions on Friday.

Kern is not the only area that will see strong wind gusts.  All the areas along the coast and inland to the mountains will see those gusts with the front on Friday.  There may even be damaging winds in the Orange/San Diego County areas as a result of a stronger low level jet moving over.   The south flow will also generate strong gusts in the nominal windy areas of the High Desert and Antelope Valley areas.

Unlike usual storms that bring stronger west winds across the area, this system will have southerly winds as stated above and this would bring the wind concern down for Imperial County … which should get less wind and more rain.


SCWF Calculated Wind Gusts Friday / Friday Night (MPH)

San Luis Obispo  – 55
Vandenberg AFB – 56
Bakersfield – 53
Ventura – 41
Pine Mountain Club – 68
Los Angeles – 44
Anaheim – 40
Riverside – 35
San Diego – 50
Hesperia – 42
Barstow – 20
Lancaster – 37
Tehachapi – 55
Palm Springs – 20
Brawley – 30
Big Bear Lake – 60


This has strong low level shear dynamics, however the main frontal zone does not have much in the way of thunderstorms showing up in my numbers.  However, because of the low level shear, some cells within the front could spin-up waterspouts, some strong, and could even produce isolated tornadoes along the coast and somewhat inland.  This is mainly for Santa Barbara, Ventura, Los Angeles, Orange, and San Diego County.  Without lightning, this would probably be a Squall-line Watch alert issuance product on Friday.

Waves on Friday will be 10-12 Feet in all areas … coastal damage is expected in spots, lasting into Saturday .. .and calming more on Sunday.  Swells will be up again by the middle part of this next week with additional storms moving into California.

Snow with this will be starting in Big Bear as early as Friday morning.  Even though it’ll be above freezing, low level moisture content being dry means the flakes will reach the ground.  Snow level goes up during the evening and with the front … over 8,000 FT so turning to rain … before dropping back to 6,000 – 6500 Ft. overnight Friday into Saturday morning.  Exact amount is not quite known, but a dusting possible for Big Bear Lake on Friday morning … and additional alerts will be issued to you as the system is further analyzed.

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