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Northern California to get several storms over next week that could ease drought conditions

One stormy pattern will not end the drought, but it could take Northern California above average for this season.

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — The second storm of the week is headed toward Northern California and more systems are lined up behind it, with potential to bring a long fire season to an end in that part of the drought-stricken state. 

These storms should last into the weekend and into next week.

The next system will arrive overnight Tuesday to Wednesday, with rain and some snow for the mountain passes. Initially, the storm will be cold enough for some snow over Donner and Echo Summits, among other mountain passes, but the storm will warm over time and the snow level is expected to rise to 8,000 feet and higher by the end of the week.

Immediate impacts could be slippery roads and poor driving conditions, but off the roads, clogged drains and localized ponding or flooding is possible during periods of heavier rain.

Through Thursday and Friday, more rain is expected during this unsettled pattern with more for the weekend.

The Sunday to Tuesday period looks especially wet with heavier rain and snow potential. Several inches of rain are expected in the Sierra and Coastal Range and at least an inch of Valley rain is possible from this period of rain.

Several broader impacts to look out for with with period of rain. Many large lakes and reservoirs will start to come up. The fire season for Northern California will likely be over for the year, except for shorter periods of time if warm and windy weather comes back. 

Rockslide and mudslides in burn areas are also possible, especially near mountain roads below steep hillsides like Highway 50 and 299.

The week’s first storm moved through Sunday night, bringing enough snow to shut down highways over the Sierra’s higher passes. Ten inches of snow fell in a few Sierra locations.

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