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More rain on way as 47.87% of state remains in drought
A complete rainbow appeared Saturday afternoon around 5 p.m. in the skies east of Manteca during a break in the rain.

More rain and snow is on the way.

It’s expected to be dry today, Tuesday and through Wednesday night in the South County with the high hitting 70 degrees before cooling off again, according to the National Weather Service (NWS).

But then Wednesday night another storm will move into the area bringing up to a quarter of an inch rain to Manteca through Friday. Yosemite Valley is expected to receive a half inch of rain. 

Between 2 and 3 inches of snow are expected on Sonora Pass on the upper reaches of the Stanislaus River watershed and 1 to 2 inches at the Highway 120 entrance to Yosemite National Park at Tioga Pass. Lassen Peak in the Cascades of Northern California is expected to receive the highest snow total from the system with between 12 and 18 inches.

Snow elevations on Wednesday night and Thursday are predicted to be as low as 5,000 to 6,500 feet. Snow levels on Friday and Saturday are anticipated to be between 4,000 and 5,500 feet.

The last storm dumped 22 inches on Sonora Pass on Friday and another 16 inches on Saturday almost at the lower end of the 40 to 60 inches the NWS had predicted.

As of Saturday, Sonora Pass had 62 inches compared to 26 inches a week early to improve the outlook for snow melt runoff in the Stanislaus River basin.

The snow was drier than expected based on  readings at the Natural Resources Conservation Service station at 8,770 feet near Sonora Pass along Highway 108. The water content of accumulated snow went form 7.4 inches a week ago to 12.2 inches on Saturday.

As of Thursday, the United States Department of Agriculture drought monitor map rated 91.52 percent of California as abnormally dry including San Joaquin County. There was 47.87 percent of the state in either moderate or severe drought. Rainfall in Southern California did take Los Angeles, Ventura and Orange County out of extreme drought. Overall, 24.2 million of California 39.5 million residents live in areas now experiencing  some degree of drought.

The Sierra — that supplies a third of the water for the state’s cities and farms — was rated as abnormally dry north of Ebbetts Pass and in moderate drought conditions to the south that includes Sonora Pass and Tioga Pass.


To contact Dennis Wyatt, email