After a brief hiatus due to rain late last month, the Los Angeles region returned to its regular programs. In November, this means little or no rain.
For those hoping for more rain, the outlook is not very good, the National Weather Service said. Long-range models look dry until early December.
Not that there was a lot of rain in Los Angeles in November. The monthly rate for downtown Los Angeles is 0.78 inches. Downtown typically receives 0.58 inches of rain in October, but has received 0.71 inches, making Los Angeles less than a quarter of an inch above normal for the rainy season.
Unfortunately, the prospects for this continuation are slim. Long-term forecasts by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration favor above normal temperatures and below normal precipitation.
Coastal areas have been wet with dense fog over the past few days, but this is likely to change next week when gusty north-east winds are forecast – possibly at a guideline level – along with a significant warming trend. Temperatures can rise to the 90s in warmer valleys, from the mid-80s in places like downtown Los Angeles.
These conditions will not help the persistent drought that still reigns in California. Atmospheric rivers have improved conditions in the Pacific Northwest and Northern California, with record rainfall in some places. “However, groundwater and reservoir levels are slow to respond and this season will require more than normal rainfall to replenish,” the US Daught Monitor said.
Southern California has a tiny chance of moisture in the first half of next week, but then “some legitimate Santa Ana winds could start on Thursday and continue through Saturday, raising the likelihood of fires,” weather forecasters said.
After all, November is the Santa Ana season in Southern California. December, January and February are the biggest challenges when it comes to rainfall in the region. Downtown Los Angeles typically receives 2.48, 3.29, and 3.64 inches of rain during these months, respectively. March can bring an additional 2.23 inches of rainfall before April typically gets 0.69 inches.
Of course, Santa Anas can continue in the winter with an annual race between the hot dry wind and the rainy season. Southern Californians cheer for the rains to come in and wash away the fire season before the fiendish winds can leave the starting blocks.
But with La Niña operating for the second year in a row, expectations may have to be lowered for these usually wet winter months, as La Niña winters in the southwest tend to be dry.
There are no guarantees. But based on records from 1950, about 84% of La Niña winters end in below average rainfall in downtown Los Angeles, and the odds are pretty good in Vegas.