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Sacramento Weather Forecast

Happy first full day of fall! Temperatures celebrate the occasion by staying in the upper 70s and low 80s, with a chance of rain Monday night into Tuesday morning.

SACRAMENTO, California — The autumnal equinox happened at 11:50 PM Friday night, so today marks the first full day of fall in Northern California. 

The first weekend of autumn will see much-below-average temperatures across the region. We're going to be in the upper 70s and low 80s throughout the weekend. Air quality will also be better than it was for most of last week.

For Saturday, highs mainly in the upper 70s across the valley, with some areas in the low 80s. Sunny skies prevail, however, we'll still have some haze out there.

Credit: KXTV
Forecast highs around Northern California for Saturday, September 23, 2023.

Air quality values in the Sacramento metro area are forecast to be in the 80s, better than the 100-150 we've had for the last few days, though still in the "moderate" category.

There just isn't enough push in the weather pattern today to get that lingering smoke and haze out of Northern California. However, that push arrives on Sunday ahead of our next weather maker.

Credit: KXTV
Better than the last few days, but haze and reduced air quality sticks around Saturday, improving a bit throughout the day. Much better air on Sunday.

A Pacific storm pushes into Oregon and Far Northern California late in the day on Sunday, dragging a cold front behind it. Southerly winds pick up across the Central Valley Sunday and Monday as the front approaches. Gusts of up to 15-25 mph possible from Modesto to Sacramento, with gusts up to 35 mph the further up the Sacramento Valley you go. These winds will really help to clean out our dirty air and bring in some of that crisp and fresh Pacific air.

This system also brings rain chances with it.

Heavy, soaking rains are expected ahead of the front along the North Coast from Eureka to Shasta, with rainfall totals of about 2 inches expected. This is great news for that area, as there are a number of active fires in the northwest corner of our state.

Credit: KXTV
Pacific storm arrives along the North Coast Sunday, bringing a few inches of rain from Cape Mendocino to Shasta. Valley showers possible Monday night.

It's not until Monday evening and overnight Tuesday that rain chances begin to increase for the Sacramento Valley.

Because Sacramento and areas to the south are on the very southern end of the system, our rainfall chances are not as high, and rainfall totals won't be too impressive in the valley. Right now, areas north of I-80 have a 20-50% chance of rain late Monday and through Tuesday morning. Rainfall totals of a tenth of an inch or less are expected.

Rain chances for areas south of I-80 are a lot slimmer, in the 10-30% range. 

There's still some level of uncertainty on timing and of the rain, but we're now getting a much better picture of what the first half of the week will look like. Be sure to stay with ABC10 for the very latest.

Lastly, it's now officially the fall season but the leaves aren't quite showing their fall colors... yet.

Credit: KXTV
The first area to see fall colors is the US-395 corridor, down in Inyo and Mono counties. Tahoe, Shasta, and Yosemite begin to change by mid October.

The first leaves in the whole of California that change into fall colors are along US-395 on the eastern slope of the Sierra. That's Inyo and Mono counties. Those leaves are just barely beginning to show signs of color right now, and peak during the first half of October.

Tahoe and surrounding areas near Highway 89 change early into October and peak mid- to late-month.

By the middle of October, Plumas National Forest, Lassen Volcanic National Park, the Shasta area, and Yosemite National Park all begin to change colors, and peak by early November.

Late into the month of October and deep into the fall festivities is when the Apple Hill area and Calaveras forests begin to change, peaking in early to mid-November.

It's not until mid to late November that urban forests – like the Sacramento metro area, Stockton, Modesto, and the Bay Area – show an abundance of fall colors, peaking from Thanksgiving into early December.

TODAY: First full day of fall! Sunny with highs in the upper 70s low 80s. Lake Tahoe highs in the middle 60s.

TONIGHT: Clear with lows in the 50s. Lake Tahoe lows in the 20s.

SUNDAY: Sunny early with clouds increasing through the daytime. Valley highs in the upper 70s. Lake Tahoe highs in the middle 60s.

MONDAY: Partly cloudy with highs in the mid to upper 70s. Lake Tahoe highs in the low 60s. Chance of showers across the region Monday evening into Tuesday.

TUESDAY: Partly cloudy with a chance of showers early. Highs in the upper 70s. Skies clearing late in the day. Lake Tahoe highs in the upper 50s with a chance of showers.

WEDNESDAY: Sunny with highs in the low to mid-80s. Lake Tahoe highs in the low 60s with a slight chance of showers.

THURSDAY: Sunny with highs in the low to low 80s. Lake Tahoe highs in the mid-60s.

FRIDAY: Sunny with highs in the low 80s. Lake Tahoe highs in the mid-60s.

SATURDAY: Sunny with highs in the upper 70s and low 80s. Lake Tahoe highs in the mid-60s.

SUNDAY: Sunny with highs in the upper 70s and low 80s. Lake Tahoe highs in the mid-60s.


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