In this video, it shows the first significant rainfall of the winter season soak California overnight! It was all thanks to an atmospheric river, or the so-called "Pineapple Express".
The video first starts off showing a few video clips and pics prior to the storm's arrival. It was Wednesday, February 5, 2014 when the video starts. Plentiful high clouds drifted in from the west as the storm system approached land. Images and satellites and radars courtesy of NASA and The Weather Channel on weather.com. Heavy rain was experienced here in San Jose, CA, especially around the very early morning hours...particularly starting at 3 a.m. and lasting around the first light of morning. Our area was also under a brief flood advisory due to the early morning deluge. The rain footage was taken around 2-3 a.m. on Thursday, February 6, 2014. Some roadways were slowly puddling over. At least this was one advantage of overnight weather spotting: no traffic or cars on the roads!
The heaviest rains have came around 4-5 a.m...which unluckily I didn't film since I needed sleep as well...though I did hear the rain from inside my bedroom. Lighter showers continued by dawn and early morning and finally lit up by mid-morning. Gloomy, chilly and drizzly conditions persisted into the afternoon hours. The video ends with a nice time lapse of the drizzly weather conditions over Silicon Valley, viewed from our church, along with some forecast notes and whatnot.
Total accumulated rainfall from this 1st storm system for our area was roughly around an inch or so. This was just an intro of what's to come by the weekend...
***The driest winter on record was finally getting a downpour of relief this weekend with a series of storms expected to deliver in a few days double the amount of rainfall the Bay Area has seen all season! For the first time in many months, some truly substantial precipitation was headed for California. This weekend's Pineapple Express is a marvelous break from the extraordinary dry conditions that have gripped California for the past many months. This event was to occur starting late Wednesday and continue into the weekend. This "Pineapple Express" was to impact California through Sunday, likely bringing enough precipitation to make a noticeable dent in the state's dire drought conditions, though the exceptionally dry and hard soils caused by California's driest year in its history are forcing the heavy rains to run off faster than usual, reducing the amount of moisture that can soak into the soil. Narrow bands of copious moisture originating in the subtropics like this weekend's "Pineapple Express" are called atmospheric rivers and are responsible for about 30 - 50% of California's yearly rainfall.
Timing of the storms: The first system had arrived late Wednesday (this video shows this 1st storm only). The second system was to arrive over the weekend. Moderate to locally heavy rain was possible across the region. While this event wasn't expected to deliver tremendous rainfall, the cumulative effect will bring some relief and will help to keep the landscape damp, rather than tinder dry. The 1st weather system had spread rain across the region late Wednesday night with moderate rainfall and continued into Thursday (shown in this video). A 2nd, wetter storm system would then bring more rain to the San Francisco Bay Area pretty much thru the whole weekend. The bulk of this atmospheric river event was forecast on Saturday.
Despite this atmospheric river event, much more rain is needed to alleviate a drought emergency gripping the state. California was getting some help from mother nature, although the rain and snow still won't be enough to make up for one of the driest rainy seasons so far...