Yuba-Sutter getting rain; snow likely in foothills
Grab your umbrellas and galoshes — it's supposed to be a wet one this weekend.
A storm began gradually moving in Friday night over the coastal range and headed for the Sierras, and it could bring as much as an inch of rain to the Valley before causing some snowfall in the mountains, said George Cline, forecaster with the National Weather Service.
"It looks like it is going to be kind of showery, cool, with snow in the mountains and rain in the valley," he said.
The weather should clear and dry up on Monday, but another storm will arrive late Tuesday that may be wetter than this first one, Cline said.
After a relatively dry winter, additional storms are good news for those in the irrigation business.
"We are always excited to have water up here in the foothills," said Tony Ward, operations manager for the Browns Valley Irrigation District.
Collins Lake has water to its brim and has been spilling for about a week, which will probably continue with this new storm, he said.
"Once the lake is full, that's our primary source of water so we are pretty much set," Ward said. "It's always good to have more rain for the large lakes — Oroville, Shasta and Folsom."
Though farmers will be happy to have more water for irrigation later, rain in the fields this time of year can pose challenges to finishing preparation work and applying sprays, said Chris Greer, county director of the University of California Yuba-Sutter Cooperative Extension.
Tree crops may need sprays applied by hand and tomato bed preparation that began in recent weeks could stall a bit, but rice farmers should not be set back too much because there is still a lot of time before planting. Any storms are probably good news for grass and rangeland farmers.
"I'm sure they are happy to get whatever they can," Greer said. "It's so dry over the winter, I think things were getting pretty desperate. I think what we all look at more, from a long-term standpoint, is how much snow they end up getting in the mountains, since that will impact the water availability for these water districts."
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