Sierra Nevada, Valley foothills get brief respite from drought

The Fresno BeeJanuary 23, 2014 

The central San Joaquin Valley foothills received a sprinkling of rain Thursday afternoon, along with some light snow flurries in the Sierra Nevada mountains.

The mild rain and snow may continue through Friday morning, but not likely any longer, said Brian Ochs, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Hanford.

Light rain descended as low as places such as Yosemite Lakes Park in Coarsegold, around 1,200 feet in elevation. Snow flurries were measured around 7,000 feet, Ochs said.

This is the first rain or snow in the region since mid-December, Ochs said. No rain, however, was reported in Fresno.

A high pressure system has been keeping precipitation away, but a brief disturbance Thursday brought low pressure into the upper levels, creating clouds and precipitation for some areas, Ochs said.

However, he said, the break will be brief and high pressure patterns likely continue through early February -- along with warmer than normal temperatures, Ochs said.

Ochs said the daytime highs in Fresno Friday and over the weekend are expected to be in the low 70s, with overnight temperatures dipping into the high 30s.

There are no chances of rain over the next couple of days, Ochs said.

Bee staff writer Angela Sasaki contributed to this report. The reporter can be reached at (559) 441-6386, or @CarmenGeorge on Twitter

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