The storm, which hit southern California on Monday, broke rain records as it swept down from the north, delivering much-needed moisture to areas dried up by drought.
A low-pressure system hovering about 200 miles off the coast of Seattle sent a cold front that stormed all the way to Southland, hitting the area with significant rain for the first time in seven months.
The storm peaked at a pressure of 943 millibars, which is extremely low and means “a very intense storm,” said David Sweet, a meteorologist at the National Weather Service in Oxnard.
“Seeing it in October is very impressive,” he said.
Some metro and coastal areas in Los Angeles County recorded more than an inch of rain. Just under half an inch fell over downtown LA, according to the National Weather Service. Beverly Hills recorded 1.12 inches and Bel Air got 1 inch.
Several foothill communities experienced even more moisture, with East Pasadena and nearby La Cañada-Flintridge both receiving 1.32 inches.
In particular, the mountains were hit by precipitation and became more than 5 inches in some places.
Opids Camp, a typical rainy place located about 3,600 feet above Pasadena, recorded 2.63 inches of rain. San Marcos Pass in Santa Barbara County’s Santa Ynez Mountains saw 4.54 inches. Rocky Butte, hidden in the Santa Lucia Mountains in northwest San Luis Obispo County, was knocked down by 5.71 inches – the highest amount recorded in the forecast area.
The weather authorities were preparing for the rain, and “it delivered pretty much what was expected,” Sweet said.
Several records were broken by the powerful storm, known for its intense strength and relatively early arrival in the rainy season.
Los Angeles International Airport recorded 0.39 inches, breaking the 0.19-inch daily record set in 1951. A 0.13-inch rainfall record was also set at Long Beach Airport, surpassing the daily record of 0.08 inches set in 2010. Camarillo Airport reported 0.7 inches, which broke the previous daily high of 0.39 inches recorded in 1940.
Paso Robles Airport, which recorded 1.54 inches, broke its 0.18-inch record set in 1950. Santa Maria Airport similarly broke its record after receiving 1.28 inches and surpassing the 0.3-inch , which fell in 1951.
Driven by a violent atmospheric river, the storm wreaked havoc in northern and central California over the weekend before penetrating the southern part of the state.
Some northern areas were hit by up to 10 inches of rain, and records were also broken there.
Downtown Sacramento reported a record-breaking 24-hour rainfall totaling 5.44 inches, exceeding a mark set in 1880, the National Weather Service said.
City officials said the rainfall represented even more than a “200-year storm level”, which occurs at 4.6 inches and has a 0.5% chance of occurring in any given year.
Placer County’s Blue Canyon received 10.4 inches of rain – beating its previous record of 1964.
And in the San Francisco Bay Area, the 4.02-inch rain that fell on Sunday marked the wettest October day in downtown San Francisco, and the city’s fourth wettest day in registered history.
Now that the skies are clear in Southern California, a warming trend is expected to follow, weather officials said. Sunny conditions are expected for the rest of the week and some areas may reach the low 80s on Thursday when Santa Ana winds are forecast for the morning.
The wind incident has the potential to trigger a consultation, Sweet said.
Times staff writers Hayley Smith and Luke Money and City News Service contributed to this report.
This story originally appeared in the Los Angeles Times.