In good weather the region has about 10 reported crashes an hour, peaking in the morning. On rainy days, the rate soars to 15 an hour and is worst in the afternoon. Go figure.
It's going to be more chilly than usual for folks staying out overnight in Pasadena for the Rose Parade. Kind of ironic for a parade that has functioned throughout its history as a promotional piece for balmy Southern California cities to sell their mid-winter allure to frigid Easterners and Midwesterners.
The officer was killed last night when he was trapped between a loose boat and rocks near the Green Pleasure Pier.
Windyty is one of those websites where you can lose a lot of time just staring and trying new views.
Is that it? Blue skies outside right now. The rain that blew in overnight was intense and caused the usual problems.
A total cloud inversion on Thursday obscured visitors' view of the Grand Canyon. It's a phenomenon that happens every few years when warm air traps a layer of cold air below the canyon walls.
An old-fashioned Pacific winter storm that slammed into Northern California has flooded streets and highways, registered some astonishing wind speeds and forced some schools to close. Surfing on Lake Tahoe!
Heavy rain and snowfall, blizzards above 6,000 feet and more are expected this week -- in Northern California. But that's good enough for us in the south. The Ridiculously Resilient Ridge has moved out of the way for now.
As the drought deepens, a new study finds, the year 2014 has been the worst single year since 800 AD — and rising temperatures mean it could yet get worse.
Three of the iconic Yosemite waterfalls have awakened from the drought — enjoy. Also, the rainfall totals from three nice days of cleansing rain in the Los Angeles area.
The big rain should arrive Tuesday. In the meantime, Northern California is getting a reminder of what "normal" looks like.
Drought gardener and blogger Emily Green wants people to remember that they need to deep-water their trees or the drought can have a worse effect than necessary.
It's still a crapshoot, but NOAA's seasonal outlook sees a good chance of at least a normal precipitation winter in California.
The high on Tuesday is only expected to be 102 -- 12 degrees more than right now. Could be worse, I guess.
Fifteen minutes in a Sierra Madre swimming pool then back to the forest. Watch the video.
The former hurricane Norbert heading into Baja California is now a tropical storm with winds down around 50 miles an hour. Expect big swells to continue on our beaches.
So much water is missing that the tectonic plate on which the West sits is rising. And that's not the worst news.
This screen grab barely does justice to the beauty of the animated graphic. Click to enjoy.
"The Hawaii Red Cross disaster truck in Hilo was stolen last night. Please call 9-1-1 if seen."
Hurricane Iselle is expected to slam into the east coast of the Big Island of Hawaii on Thursday night, with winds of 60 to 95 miles an hour and a storm surge of 1-2 feet. Forecasters predict five to eight inches of rain to fall on the Big Island.
Hurricane Iselle will arrive first, over Hilo as early as Thursday. A tropical storm watch is in effect across the islands.
It was very nice having a couple of episodes of soft rain fall on my head (and my yard) over the weekend. But despite the isolated newsworthy pummeling over and just below the San Gabriels, this was not much of a rain event.
Lightning strikes at the water line are very rare here. Which is fortunate, because they are scary.
Credit for the headline to the High Country News, which notes that "with each passing day it seems more certain: 2014 is going to be an El Niño year, and probably a big one."
Based on recent developments, some scientists think this event may rival the record El Niño event of 1997-1998. If that does happen, 2015 would almost be guaranteed to set a record for the warmest year on Earth, says a report.
The 48-hour rainfall map shows less than four inches at most stations around the county, but that's a lot more than we are used to getting. Video of the wave inside.
Awesome weather map. The free water will be here Friday morning.
Taking all of the night's news shows together, I figure there were about 30 minutes of coverage for each tenth of an inch of rain to actually fall. But it's still early in the predicted storm cycle.
The blocking ridge of high pressure over the Pacific Ocean off North America couldn't last forever. It just seemed that way. An explanation.
Even after last week's heavy rainfall up north, the drought maps are still a dry sea of red. And oh by the way, it looks as if the Ridiculously Resilient Ridge may be re-forming out in the Pacific.
The LA City Council wants action on the Weather Channel-DirecTV dispute — weather or not you agree.
Folsom Lake is six feet higher, but that only means the reservoir is at 19% of capacity instead of 17%. Nice graphic shows how water use differs around the state.
As much as 6-7 inches of rain could fall as the ridiculously resilient ridge retreats. SoCal won't be part of the big event, at least so far.
LA Stage Times is going on hiatus, effective immediately. Longtime theater writer Don Shirley will now post regularly at LA Observed.
It felt very weird to have a few splatters on the car windshield. Ten minutes later, a few more drops hit our breakfast table. Alert the networks!
In the annals of weather records, this is one nobody wanted to break, says the Bee. Not since 1884 has Sacramento gone this many winter days without rain or snow.
The high pressure ridge keeping us dry also left Mavericks with the ideal combination of big swells and no wind or weather.
This might be the most beautiful surfing video you have seen (and heard.) Meanwhile, the National Weather Service warns of very big waves on all of Hawaii's islands this week.
Weather models show California's historically dry weather is expected to continue. Gov. Brown today declared a drought emergency. The Obama Administration named 27 counties as disaster areas.
Check out to the NOAA satellite pictures and a release from Mono County. Plus: Olympic hopefuls like Lindsey Jacobellis (video) are in Mammoth this weekend.
The Annenberg Beach House in Santa Monica has declared "Bonus Pool Days!" because the weather here is so nice.
With maximum sustained winds of 195 mph, Super Typhoon Haiyan (as it is known elsewhere) "is thought to be the strongest storm to ever make landfall anywhere in the world in modern records." President Aquino of the Philippines urged the nation to prepare.
Conditions out in the Pacific add up to a third straight off year for rainfall. But you never know — normal is such a squishy concept here.
I like Santa Ana conditions, especially these kind with little wind, but I recognize that many don't. For you, the National Weather Service warns breathlessly that it's going to cool to the 70s — maybe even the 60s — with less than half an inch of rain on the way by midweek.
The cyclone out of the Pacific is the only recorded tropical storm to make landfall in the Los Angeles area. It came ashore in Long Beach.
Egger arrives in October from The Weather Channel to take over as the meteorologist on "Today in LA" on NBC 4. She's a UC Santa Barbara grad from Grand Terrace in the Inland Empire.
Just because LA is not a desert doesn't mean it's not getting hotter. Tim Rutten surveys the climate picture in his weekend column.
Anyone making the flights up and down California this morning could not fail to be impressed and awed by the monster smoke cloud being sent up over the Sierra from the Rim Fire. Check out the view inside.
There was a bunch of hail out in the Mojave Desert this afternoon — those were some mighty pretty thunderheads over the San Gabriels visible from the basin. But it's a long way from the Antelope Valley to the Susquehanna River.
Kyle Hunter sued KCBS and KCAL last year. This time he alleges that KABC did not consider him for the job due to illegal sex and age discrimination. The job went to Bri Winkler.
Kevin Martin, the blogging weatherman who took his mother (and her car) to Death Valley on Sunday, said he found temperatures a few degrees higher than the official reading of 129 degrees recognized by the National Weather Service. His thermometer read 135.5 degrees at Badwater Basin, the low point of North America. But there's no official NWS station there.
A Corona meteorologist and blogger is heading into Death Valley National Park for this weekend's heat siege, betting on the come that the temperature will set a new world record. The old record is 134 degrees.
After the tornado passed today in Moore, Oklahoma, one family opened its shelter and looked onto a vanished neighborhood. Whoever is holding the camera seems stunned into silence, at first.
A milestone of spring in California — the opening of the Tioga Pass road through the backcountry of Yosemite National Park — will take place on the fourth earliest date since 1980.
Since it looks as if the SoCal fire season is going to be long and mean, scientist-blogger Grace Peng offers a primer on the physics of flames and wind here. Plus: Reuters photographer Jonathan Alcorn on an eerie night at the Camarillo Springs fire.
The wildfire that began near Camarillo Springs Road and U.S. 101 spread to 28,000 acres on Friday, but firefighters kept the flames from engulfing any homes for a second day. Residents fled several neighborhoods, however, as the fire jumped ridges and moved toward communities such as Hidden Valley.
Brush conditions around Camarillo are like October, fire officials say — and it's only May. More than 6,500 acres have scorched, forcing evacuations, but no homes have been destroyed. Burned agricultural buildings in the strawberry fields near Cal State Channel Islands have raised concerns about toxic smoke.
When the Los Angeles Fire Department puts up its red flag, thousands who live in the city's hillsides and canyons are affected. Move your car off the streets in posted areas, or risk an expensive ticket and possibly get towed.
It has been more foggy than not along the beaches for the past week or so. Blame the recurring Southern California weather phenomenon known as the Catalina eddy, shown here. NASA explains how it works.
We know about the deal we make with earthquakes, but the biggest catastrophes through time in California have actually been storms. There's only been one on the epic scale since statehood, but a story in the new Scientific American says the next time will be worse for us.
Remember how the big news in Los Angeles just last weekend was the cold? This winter weekend, the swimming pool at the Annenberg Community Beach House in Santa Monica is adding extra hours for Martin Luther King Day.
Temperatures have plunged into the 40s and the local news is freaking out.
Citrus growers in the Inland Empire fired up seldom-used smudge pots, ran water in the orchards and tried to create wind between the trees in desperate moves on Saturday night and this morning to protect the fruit from freezing temperatures. Smoke could be seen rising this morning from burners in citrus areas such as Redlands and Mentone.
NASA posted this image of Hurricane Sandy taken at noon Eastern time on Sunday.
The National Weather Service has put out a special weather statement and declared a red flag alert in inland areas of Los Angeles County.
For a long time the keepers of the weather stats believed the hottest temperature recorded on Earth to be 136 degrees at El Azizia, Libya, exactly 90 years ago today — September 13, 1922. Doubts were raised, studies were done, and now scientists say the distinction belongs to Death Valley.
Today's usual afternoon thundershowers over the San Gabriels and the high desert smushed down into the basin this time, drenching places like Altadena and Studio City in some pretty heavy rain. Then it lifted and many rainbows were had, including one over Dodger Stadium. Fun diversion for many, judging by social media, unless you were caught in the places where summer t-storms turn into flash floods.
John Rabe of KPCC enticed me out to Northridge on Wednesday for an "Off-Ramp" story, and since it was midday in the West Valley, in the middle of a heat wave, and Rabe's an intrepid reporter slash radio host, he brought along the makings of a classic journalism experiment. The temperature was a few notches over 100, but was it hot enough to cook an egg? Find out inside.
The National Weather Service says the combination of hot temperatures (over 100 in many areas) and higher than usual humidity for the summer "will create a prolonged period of well above normal and possibly dangerous heat." Some of the desert temperatures could take your breath away.
BuzzFeed says this photo of Wednesday's thunderstorm over New York was taken out the window of an airliner at 10,000 feet by former NFL linebacker Dhani Jones.
Hector Tobar loves this LA summer so far, and I agree. The news is that this is Tobar's last A2 column in the Times. He's going to the books desk to write about literary LA.
It's been pretty dang nice along the beaches so far in these final days of official spring. But as anyone with very many summers in Los Angeles knows, a marine layer could blanket us in a deep, gray, soul-sucking June gloom at any moment. A good read on how the marine layer works and why.
Here are pictures of snow last night in historic Bodie, the preserved mining town in the Eastern Sierra near Bridgeport. The Tioga Road into Yosemite National Park reopened today after a weather closure.
Eighteen-degree gradient between the beach and the Valley. The fog is definitely in.
The National Weather Service advises that a cold weather system will be sliding in Tuesday. If you were thinking of going sailing, take a look at the map.
China's dust seems to create more snow than California dust. Though the data is still incomplete.
-feb2012.jpg" class="mt-image-left" style="float: left; margin: 0 20px 5px 0;" />Water watcher and dry gardener Emily Green is advising her fellow Los Angeles-area gardeners that despite the tease of rain this week, it's time to irrigate the soil.
Just 17 seconds, uploaded to You Tube by Jonathan Alcorn.
Sean Collins, a self-taught wave forecaster who changed the way that surfers find out where to take their boards, died yesterday after collapsing of a heart attack while playing tennis in Orange County.
Lots of roads in the higher elevations of Los Angeles County are having snow closures after Monday's storm.
Volunteers have restrung most of the the wind-damaged lights on Altadena's traditional Christrmas Tree Lane and say they will flip the switch on Saturday at 6 p.m. — as scheduled before last week's freak wind event.
Over half the specimens at the Los Angeles County Arboretum & Botanic Garden suffered some kind of wind damage. Sobering pictures.
The National Weather Service update for Mammoth Mountain contained a startling fact.
What's that, half a million people in the Los Angeles metropolitan area bedding down for a second night without electricity?
A couple of hardy surfers hit the waves today on Lake Tahoe — at 6,225 feet above sea level.
DWP's map of outages is impressive. Plus: historic Los Feliz deodars down.
Pasadena really took the brunt of last night's wind storm.
The air over the Pacific Northwest has been at his highest barometric pressure in a long time. Instant wind down here.
So windy in LA that twice the usual amount of sad tumbleweeds made of broken dreams just blew down my street.
All passenger terminals and runway 25R were affected by an hour-long power outage tonight at Los Angeles International Airport.
The red flag restrictions that limit parking on many streets in the hills and canyons kick in at 8 a.m. Thursday. I'm kind of surprised they are not in force tonight.
What do you think of the bizarro temps this afternoon?
NOAA's forecast for the coming winter expects a drier than average wet season in Southern California and a higher risk of wildfire.
Coming up on 4 p.m. on October 12, the LA Observed weather center reports a Downtown temperature of 99 degrees. 97 in the Valley, 88 along the KOST (sorry, couldn't...
The thunderstorm towers are soaring high over the San Gabriels.
La Niña typically means a drier-than-usual wet season in Southern California and across the Southwest, but wetter months for our friends in the Pacific Northwest.
The New York Times tweets, "As a public service, @nytimes will allow free access to storm-related coverage on nytimes.com and its mobile apps."
If you think the predicted inundation in Manhattan is sobering, wait until you see Brooklyn.
The view from NASA's Terra satellite at 12:30 eastern time. Also, video on Thursday from the International Space Station.
The National Weather Service has issued an excessive heat watch for the Los Angeles area from Saturday afternoon through the evening.
The weather geek who sent me this photo loves the wind vortices evident in the clouds off the Southern California coast this week. I just see a nice image.
Jonathan Alcorn went to Venice Beach for the first warm day of spring in Los Angeles.
Yosemite National Park was cut off to road traffic by snow and downed trees on Monday, but highways 120 and 140 reopened into the park this morning.
In all the decades that Mammoth Mountain has been a destination for SoCal skiers, this looks to be the winter with the most snowfall. At least since they began keeping records in 1969.
The last day of official winter has been having some fun with us in and around Los Angeles.
There's lots of visible snow this afternoon on the mountain slopes lining the Los Angeles basin, but the predictions of snow below 1,000 feet proved to be overly enthusiastic.
Storm that's coming could bring snow to areas that rarely see it.
And now from a real photographer: Jonathan Alcorn, out early Sunday at Marina del Rey.
The scientist who watches the weather at Bad Mom, Good Mom says the evidence is in. The La Nina phenomenon that was supposed to be keeping us relatively dry this winter has abated in the eastern Pacific.
Really, snow in January? That's so unfair. To our New York friends, here's an early valentine from the Coast.
The National Weather Service is warning of a "strong Santa Ana event" starting tonight across Los Angeles and Ventura counties, lasting into Thursday afternoon.
On the 17th anniversary of the Northridge earthquake, it seems like a good time to point out the new research that says a theoretical Pacific-spawned superstorm is now believed likely to do much more damage in California than a major earthquake on the San Andreas Fault.
The CHP is letting drivers cross in and out of Southern California again on Interstate 5 through the Tehachapis and on I-15 in Cajon Pass.
The CHP closed I-15 through Cajon Pass after 10 p.m. due to the snow, ice and sliding cars.
It figures that on the last day to get back in town for many Angelenos, Interstate 5 is closed by snow over The Grapevine.
Channel 5 reporter Elizabeth Espinosa began the day standing beside I-5 in the shivering Grapevine area talking about — and tweeting about — the cold weather. Then she popped out some other news.
The Sacramento Bee website posts — very big — 38 photos of the past week's rain and flooding from newspapers around state, plus AP and Getty Images.
Overnight growth at the River Center on San Fernando Road in Cypress Park, by John Rabe.
Here's two more: Olvera Street in the rain, by photographer Kevin McCollister, and this evening on the Glendale Freeway, by photographer Jonathan Alcorn.
Is this when we make a joke about pots of special interest gold at the end of the rainbow?
The view is from the window at Langer's deli. I'm guessing lunchtime.
Blame the "blocking anticyclone." Skies should clear on Thursday.
The city has activated the Emergency Operations Center and gone to level 2 until morning, Council President Eric Garcetti says.
Gene Kelly on the backlot at MGM. Hat tip to Eric Spillman.
Here's the rain totals map I always prefer, from the county's public works website, with rain gauge measurements for the past 72 hours.
This morning's flash flood watch from the National Weather Service advises that a lot of water will be coming down, with the usual potential consequences.
Here's video Mark Frauenfelder posted at BoingBoing of an impressive hailstorm last week in Georgia.
Temps are supposed to reach 100 again in some parts of Los Angeles today. If these clouds mean the humidity will be higher than yesterday's approximately bone-dry conditions, this afternoon might be more unpleasant than Monday.
National Weather Service officials at the regional base in Oxnard monitored the official Downtown reading on Monday as it reached, then passed the old record of 112 degrees — then saw the meter had broken down.
My car thermometer (pictured) registered 116 degrees at about 2:30 p.m. while on the 405 freeway at Wilshire, near Westwood. Today's official high of 113 is the highest ever recorded in downtown Los Angeles.
I spotted Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and Maria Shriver pedaling their bikes northbound on Main Street in Santa Monica.
A new study out of JPL concludes that the El Niño readings in the western Pacific have become more intense and moved westward — over time, not currently.
There's so much talk about the cooler-than-usual temperatures that the National Weather Service put out a statement yesterday titled What has happened to summer in Southern California. The explanation is...
And for the first time all day, the sun is out too. Nice, if weird. The rain stopped after about five minutes....
This was the 23rd straight day with the official temperature reading in Los Angeles below average, Mark Thompson just said on Fox 11.
The National Weather Service officially flipped the switch today on expectations of our future rain, declaring the "demise" of our recent El Niño conditions.
We can probably close the books on this year's local rain season, JPL meteorologist Bill Patzert says in an email exchange picked up by Emily Green, the ace water blogger at Chance of Rain.com.
Twitter has erupted with rainbow images from across Los Angeles.
Once again, residents of about 500 homes in La Cañada Flintridge, La Crescenta and Acton have been told to leave due to an approaching "very cold and vigorous storm system."
From this morning in La Cañada Flintridge, via Channel 7.
The heavier-than-expected rain that fell overnight has challenged debris basis and runoff channels across the front of the San Gabriels, especially in drainages where the Station Fire burned.
For some reason the weather forecast on the Los Angeles Times home page right now is calling for snow and says the temperature is 37 degrees.
The airline is canceling most arrivals and departures this afternoon at Bob Hope Airport in Burbank, and in Ontario, Orange County, San Diego, Phoenix and Tucson, because of high wind conditions.
The strongest flood warnings from the National Weather Service are for the Orange County canyons. The morning update on the Los Angeles situation from Mayor Villaraigosa's office follows.
is the current radar map on Channel 9. That's Los Angeles buried under the orange.
More than 1,000 homes beneath the Station Fire burn areas are now under mandatory evacuation orders, per media reports.
A Channel 7 viewer sent the station this clip of a tornado funnel touching down near Riverside
Mayor Villaraigosa won't be heading to Washington for the U.S. Conference of Mayors this week after all. "Out of an abundance of caution," spokeswoman Sarah Hamilton says, he'll be staying...
There's no evidence of tornadoes forming, but the storm coming through is apparently capable of spinning them off.
'Rocks the size of frozen turkeys' tumbled down Canyonside Road in La Crescenta during Monday's storm, says the father of Dashel Dupuy, the 13-year-old who shot this amazing video. It's...
Three or four storms that could drop as much as 20 inches of rain on the San Gabriels and the adjacent foothills are expected to start rolling in this weekend.
Scientist-blogger Grace Peng sent along this map of a jet stream slamming into Southern California, offering it as an explainer of what happened around the area today. Click it to...
Rico Gagliano, a reporter for "Marketplace" and co-host of "The Dinner Party Download" podcast, sent along this photo of a tree that blew down during this morning's wind gusts. No...
The so-called Lindbergh beacon was shining atop Los Angeles City Hall when Kevin McCollister captured the view during Saturday's storm. Click to biggify....
This week's snowfall covered some of the ash from the Station Fire that has given the San Gabriel Mountains a sickly appearance. Snow is also better than rain when it...
The county's official rainfall map for the past 24 hours shows 0.00 for two high profile measuring stations: the ones at USC (presumably the gauge formerly known as Civic Center)...
This morning's view of the San Gabriels and Cucamonga Peak from Riverside, by Guy McCarthy of Watershed News. More Sunday snow pictures in his Flickr stream. Coordinates fixed...
Cellphones, GPS and the struggling economy are conspiring to begin the die-off phase for regular traffic reports on your car radio, says Daisy Nguyen at AP. (She could have cited...
This is how nice a day we had for Thanksgiving: Veronique de Turenne could see Downtown Los Angeles from the cove that Here in Malibu calls home. Multiple, larger views...
Posted in May, but apt today. What happens in L.A. when it rains, the spoof — with some good lines and extensive UCLA scenery....
More from Steve Greenberg in the LA Sketchbook archive...
Nice image of the national weather picture — clouds almost everywhere but the Southwest — at the Chance of Rain blog. The blog also has a take on Gov. Schwarzenegger's...
Over the weekend, La Crescenta author Bernadette Murphy had a nice opinion piece in the L.A. Times invoking John McPhee and his seminal writing on debris flows out of the...
Weird story. Melanie Patton Renfrew, a geography professor at Harbor College, has pleaded no contest to violating a judge's order to stop harassing KNBC weather caster Fritz Coleman. That, as...
John Stodder grabbed this image of the smoke that belched from the Redondo Beach power plant near King Harbor as generators cranked up to meet today's demand for air conditioning....
This stormy President's Day is when the 2009 Los Angeles Marathon would have been run under one of Frank McCourt's schedules. The race was postponed until Memorial Day, and at...
David Garza of Los Angeles Mission College grabbed this photo of snow dusting the hills behind Sylmar this afternoon....
The reader who sent this photo into LongBeachReport.com said it was the last of three water spouts seen descending offshore before 9 a.m. Story there....
Friends in Washington keep messaging about how frigid it is there. So just for the record, the giant thermometer outside LA Observed Tower reads 84 degrees. Golden sunshine, as David...
Snow-capped peaks, sailboats and sea lions: just another winter day in L.A. The video features the Marina Peninsula and Marina del Rey, Ballona Lagoon, Santa Monica Bay and Santa Catalina...
Just about every news photographer I know has a favorite spot to go grab the obligatory snowy peaks behind downtown Los Angeles shot that news desks want every year or...
The director's daily weather report on camera from his home in Los Angeles. Because I hadn't linked to it before. Lynch's website...
Here we go again -- more hot and windy weather on the way. Guy McCarthy at Watershed News gathers the details: Just a few days after a cold front contributed...
Veronique's sunrise photo over the cove at Malibu captures the day in Southern California. It's 93 in downtown Los Angeles right now, with 5% humidity. Here in Malibu...
Today's high of 109 degrees set the local record for a June 19. AP...
High waves are pounding the coast and rip currents are making the sea more treacherous than usual. Piers at Manhattan Beach and Seal Beach were closed yesterday due to the...
Jay Babcock at Nature Trumps: An L.A. River Blog posts this scene from November, looking upstream from the footbridge toward Los Feliz Boulevard and the burned Griffith Park hills. Click...
Mayor Villaraigosa announced some road closures in the park as the rains continue. "The park has experienced some minor to moderate debris flows and flooding on several of its main...
Spotted in the Daily Breeze, by staff photographer Robert Casillas....
Professor emeritus Ralph Shaffer has been trying without success to get Times writers to stop referring to Los Angeles as a desert, climate-wise. Simply put, he says it rains too much for the coastal plain to qualify as a desert.
New at LA Observed
Neon sign for Clifton'sRenovations at Clifton's Cafeteria in DTLA went a little public over the weekend. More
No more Mr. Disguise guyJonathan Gold drops his anonymity as documentary screens at Sundance. More
Don ShirleyTwo musicals opened here last weekend. One lives up to the expression "gotta sing, gotta dance." Don Shirley reviews
Christensen & Gold columnHow LA and Santa Monica will cut water use by 20 percent in two years. Column
Norms La CienegaTake My Picture Gary Leonard is a regular weekly feature of LA Observed. Gary's archive.