Ken Clark

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Weather Calming Down for the Weekend

April 4, 2012; 12:13 PM ET

The cold trough that is centered in the Northwest will now slowly move east after tomorrow. Between now and then, additional rain and snow showers are likely with even thunder in spots during the afternoon and evening hours. Snow levels will be low, between 1,000 and 2,000 feet. Where thunderstorms do occur, expect small hail. Friday will still be somewhat unsettled, although not quite as much as the next 24 hours. There should be fewer showers west of the Cascades; otherwise, scattered showers of rain and snow continue to be likely.

Farther south, the cold trough will bring below-normal temperatures through Friday in all of California along with some gusty winds. The strongest winds are likely on the Central coast, the west side of the San Joaquin Valley and through north-south passes Santa Barbara through Los Angeles county. There are likely to be a few snow showers tomorrow over the northern Sierra but these will cause no travel problems or much accumulation.

The trough will move east over the holiday weekend. Meanwhile, a ridge will push up from the south across the Great Basin as another cold trough drops south through the east-central Pacific. The trough will develop offshore far enough to keep most of its precipitation over water Saturday and if there are a couple of showers Sunday they will be on parts of the Oregon and extreme northwest California coast. Otherwise, expect temperatures to modify with the biggest warming coming for central and Southern California and Arizona with above-normal temperatures taking over and sunshine much of the time.

Eventually that Pacific trough will move east. Any showers early next week will confined to parts of western Oregon and Washington but then could spread south and east Wednesday and Thursday. It does look likely that much of California could eventually will get some rain and snow by Wednesday night and Thursday.

The views expressed are those of the author and not necessarily those of AccuWeather, Inc. or AccuWeather.com

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Ken Clark
Ken Clark's Western U.S. weather blog tackles daily weather events with commentary from one of the most experienced and trusted Western U.S. weather experts.