Major El Nino, Soaking Still on Track for CA

el nino

“Oh yeah?  So WHERE is all this rain you say we’re going to get?”

Basically, it comes down to this:  You can’t determine the outcome of a game based on the first play…let’s see what amazing things will happen during the rest of the game!

A Facebook friend of mine recently asked since this is supposedly the biggest baddest “El Nino” in many years and yet the Weather Channel shows Zero chance of precipitation in the 15 Day here in SoCal…..just curious when all the “rain” is going to start…

Patience! Patience! First, not all El Nino seasons (weatherwise) are the same, so while we look to past setups with similar conditions as a guide, your results may vary.

weather pattern

Second, we look at the seasons in the BIG picture, Winter into Spring, for the greatest impact on west coast weather. Winter hasn’t even begun!

And third, using past strong El Ninos as a gauge, it would be shocking to not receive much above normal rainfall this winter.

Looking back to 1997-1998 and 1982-1983 as the last big El Ninos…roughly comparable in strength to what we’re seeing now…and LAX as a sample point, we really didn’t have extreme storms and rainfall until the January-March time period.

January and March of 1983 saw double the normal rain at LAX and February 1998 brought us more than 3x normal rain!

  • 97-98 water year rain: 31.01″
  • 82-83 water year rain: 31.25″
  • Normal water year rain at LAX: 15.14″

Photo Credit: Chris Dunn

Chris Dunn is an Emmy award-winning broadcaster and is now the Chief Meteorologist with Local 15 NBC News, WPMI Mobile, Alabama. His 20-plus-year tel...