Winter storm brings rain, snow, windy conditions to San Diego - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

Winter storm brings rain, snow, windy conditions to San Diego

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Viewer submitted photo of water trucks in Boulevard around 8 a.m. February, 20, 2013. Viewer submitted photo of water trucks in Boulevard around 8 a.m. February, 20, 2013.
Viewer submitted photo of grapple on a car in El Cajon around 5 a.m. February, 20, 2013. Viewer submitted photo of grapple on a car in El Cajon around 5 a.m. February, 20, 2013.

SAN DIEGO (CNS) - A cold storm from the Gulf of Alaska brought deep snow to San Diego County mountains early Wednesday and a light dusting to the upper deserts and inland valleys.

According to National Weather Service preliminary totals, the storm dropped 10 inches of snow on Mount Laguna, seven inches in Julian, six in Boulevard, four in Pine Valley and on Palomar Mountain, two inches in Descanso and one inch in Shelter Valley.

An NWS winter storm warning for the mountains expired at noon.

Though the snowfall ended in most spots early today, road conditions in the mountains remain hazardous.

Hail fell in Carlsbad and Valley Center Tuesday night and in La Mesa early Wednesday, according to the NWS.

As of noon, 1.18 inches of rain had fallen in Santa Ysabel, 0.83 inches in Alpine, 0.7 inches in Potrero, 0.62 inches in Santee, half an inch in Rancho San Diego, 0.42 inches in Miramar and 0.32 inches at Lindbergh Field.

Winds of 15 to 25 mph and gusts of and gusts up to 45 mph continued to blow through San Diego County desert areas. A high wind advisory was set to remain in effect until 6 p.m.

Weather service forecasters said the wind could make driving difficult, especially for motorists in high-profile vehicles. The wind may be strong enough to blow over trees and down electrical lines.

A gale warning for mariners will be in effect until 8 p.m.

The NWS issued a high surf advisory through 2 p.m. Thursday, saying 6-10 foot waves were likely Wednesday afternoon. The surf should be in the 4-7 foot range Thursday.

THIS IS A STORY UPDATE. For an earlier version, read below.

SAN DIEGO (CBS 8/CNS) - Eastbound Interstate 8 near East Willows Road has been re-opened Wednesday morning. The CHP blocked the onramp to the freeway because there were too many accidents.

There are also chain requirements for the local mountains in place as of early Wednesday morning.

Snow levels have dropped lower than usual and this cold storm, from the Gulf of Alaska, has dumped heavy snowfall in the mountains early Wednesday, and lighter snow showers to the upper deserts and far inland valleys.

According to the National Weather Service, the storm was likely to linger in the county through mid-day, dropping the snow level below 2,000 feet at times and producing small hail in even lower elevations.

Through 5 a.m., only brief intermittent showers were likely in coastal and valley areas but after that, showers will become more frequent with brief heavy downpours and small hail, according to the weather service. The agency also said thunderstorms were possible after 5 a.m.

The weather service scheduled a winter storm warning for heavy snow in the mountains until noon, saying up to eight inches of snow accumulation was likely above 3,500 feet and up to a foot of snow accumulation was possible above 4,500 feet.

Sustained southwest to west winds of 25 to 35 mph and gusts around 60 mph were expected near ridge tops and along desert mountain slopes.

"The combination of low temperatures and strong winds will result in lowest wind chills of 5 to 15 degrees below zero through early this morning, mainly above 6,500 feet," according to an NWS advisory.

The weather service also scheduled a less-serious winter weather advisory for valley areas above 2,000 feet until 6 a.m. During the time covered by the advisory, two to four inches of snow was expected to accumulate near the foothills, and wind gusts were expected to be around 35 mph.

In the deserts, a high wind warning was scheduled until 8 p.m. In scheduling the warning, the weather service said winds in the deserts would be gusting up to 60 mph Wednesday.

The storm also brought strong winds off the coast of San Diego Wednesday. A gale warning for mariners off the San Diego coastline was scheduled until 4 p.m. through Wednesday afternoon, frequent gusts of 35-40 knots were expected.

The weather service scheduled a high surf advisory for the beaches until 2 p.m., saying very rough and choppy seven to 11 foot waves and surf were likely.

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