Cold Pacific storm to bring rain, snow, gusty winds to Riverside County

RIVERSIDE – A cold Pacific storm will bring rain, snow and gusty winds to Riverside County late Thursday through early Saturday, forecasters said today.

”A pair of Pacific low pressure systems will merge off the British Columbia coast Wednesday, then move southward along the west coast, moving through Southwest California Thursday night through early Saturday,” according to the National Weather Service.

The agency said the storm will likely drop up to an inch of rain in the mountains.

Three to six inches of snowfall from the storm is expected above 4,000 feet with local amounts to 10 inches, mainly above 7,000 feet. The snow level could lower to 2,500 feet by Saturday, according to the weather service.

In the mountains and Coachella Valley, southwest to west winds are expected, with gusts of up to 55 miles per hour by Friday.

”This weather could be deadly for unprepared campers or hikers,” according to an NWS advisory. ”The combination of strong winds, low visibilities and snowfall could create hazardous travel conditions in the mountains, especially Friday and Friday night, with snow levels low enough to impact travel on Interstate 15 through the Cajon Pass.”

Heavy showers also could cause local urban flooding, mainly Friday and Friday night, according to the weather service.

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