‘Liquid gold’: After dry November, rain arrives in Southern California

A painted storefront on San Fernando Road at the San Fernando Mall shows off a winter landscape
A painted storefront on San Fernando Road at the San Fernando Mall shows off a winter landscape, something that might be a possibility in some parts of Southern California as a winter storm moves through on Dec. 7.
(Myung J. Chun/Los Angeles Times)

Angelenos on Tuesday received a much-needed bit of rain after one of the driest Novembers in recent memory.

“We opened the door and can confirm very light sprinkles here at our office!” the National Weather Service in Los Angeles said in a tweet. “Let’s keep those good vibes for more of that liquid gold this week!”

Downtown Los Angeles received zero inches of precipitation in November, officials said. The last time that happened was 1992.


The area has received a scant 0.71 inches since the water year began Oct. 1, compared with the normal 1.68 inches for this time of year, according to David Sweet, a meteorologist with the weather service in Oxnard.

The rain marks the start of a pattern shift that will bring cooler, wetter weather through at least Thursday, Sweet said.

Tuesday’s light rain is being delivered by a weak storm that is expected to drop about 0.15 inches of precipitation. Snow is possible at elevations above 9,000 feet.

A second, stronger storm slated for Thursday will bring additional rain and snow, with forecasts calling for up to half an inch of rain in some areas, and snow levels dropping to 5,000 feet.

The weather system, which is moving in from the Pacific Northwest, is also bringing cooler temperatures that are expected to linger through the weekend. Daytime temperatures in the Los Angeles area will hover in the high 50s and low 60s for several days.

Sweet said another storm is possible next week.

Officials reminded residents to be wary of winter hazards that could come with the incoming rain and snow, including slippery roads.

Though the storms won’t make a dent in the region’s ongoing drought, many locals posted on social media to celebrate the arrival of even the smallest bit of moisture.

“I feel so happy to wake up to beautiful rain, fog and cool weather,” one person wrote on Twitter.


Another summed it up more simply: “RAIN!”