Late spring rains beating average and forecast

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The promised historic El Niño rainstorms may not have appeared in Southern California, but the recent spring rains are trying to overcome the image of a totally weak or missing El Niño.

During April and May, the U.S. Forest Service’s Keenwild Station has had nearly 3.5 inches of rain and Pine Cove has recorded about 3.25 inches of rain and a quarter inch of snow. Historically, the Hill has received about 2.75 inches of rain during these two months. Although most of May could bring more rain, the forecast for the remainder of the month is dry.

Nevertheless, total rain at Keenwild has been 21.3 inches, the most precipitation on the Hill since 2011. And Pine Cove has reported nearly 25.25 inches, which is less than half an inch less than the long-term annual rainfall.

Public Information Officer Darren Meyer, California Highway Patrol, said (regarding Hill roads), “Caltrans had their plows out because of debris on the highways carried by fast flowing water.”

During the year ending June 30, 2011, the Hill recorded more than 29 inches of rain, the only year in the past decade that has exceeded the annual historic average of 25.7 inches.

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