The first significant winter storm of the season is making its way into Northern California, and boy is it a doozy. Not only are the mountains forecast to see up to 3 feet of snow in 48 hours, but winds of up to 70 mph could bring 35-foot waves to the North Coast.
The National Weather Service is predicting dangerous surf on west/northwest facing beaches on Tuesday and Wednesday, with massive waves from the howling winds:
Large dangerous surf conditions from 30 to 35 feet may develop for west-northwest facing beaches Tuesday evening into Wednesday. Monitor the latest forecast at https://t.co/RglzVDYks4 pic.twitter.com/8ob6b2lrrK— NWS Eureka (@NWSEureka) November 25, 2019
The high tide and large swells are expected all the way down to the Bay Area, where some coastal flooding is expected along with waves up to 20 feet:
A powerful storm system off the coast this week will generate a large northwest swell Tuesday night into Wednesday. Beach hazards include large breaking waves and coastal flooding. #CAwx pic.twitter.com/YyTzal6ZXa— NWS Bay Area (@NWSBayArea) November 25, 2019
The windy conditions are already being felt along the coast, with the Point Reyes National Seashore closing its stairs down to the Point Reyes Lighthouse and urging visitors to use caution near the water:
Winds are currently over 40mph at the #lighthouse so stairs are closed. With the stairs closed, there is no access down to the lighthouse. Please call the lighthouse visitor center at 415-669-1534 for updates. (ca) pic.twitter.com/Xy5yYXoVfT— Point Reyes NPS (@PointReyesNPS) November 25, 2019
With two months of nearly zero precipitation in October and November, it looks like winter in Northern California is starting off with a bang. Please use caution if visiting near the coastal areas of NorCal.