A lone surfer makes his way into the water as storm clouds come ashore Tuesday, Dec. 2, 2014, in San Diego.
After painfully parched months, California's getting soaked by a rainstorm. But although the rainfall's heavy enough to cause mudslides and flooding, it won't be enough to end the state's devastating drought.
Over the past 24 hours, around 1.5 inches of rain fell in the Bay Area and Los Angeles. Rainfall broke daily records in Southern California, according to the National Weather Service.
The rain is expected to continue into the night, before tapering off into showers Wednesday.
Climate Central, a nonprofit news organization focused on climate science,reports that an aptly named "atmospheric river" of water vapor is causing the precipitation. Record warm ocean temperatures are supplying more water, and increasing rainfall.
Dramatic as this rainstorm is, it's a drop in the bucket when it comes to resolving California's historic drought. The state will need far more precipitation to plug its water deficit.
As meteorologist Jan Null told the Washington Post: “The 3-season deficit for San Francisco at the beginning of the rainfall season was 26.07 inches." She went on to explain that “if you add that to the 23.65 inches needed for this season to ultimately reach normal we would need 49.73 inches to be at ‘normal’.”
The summer's wildfires left Southern California more vulnerable to mudslides and flooding. Residents of Camarillo Springs in Ventura County and Glendora in Los Angeles County evacuated their homes, according to the Los Angeles Times
In the Bay Area, rain and flooding snarled morning commutes, and delayed flights to the area.
Heavy rain causes mud flow, forcing mandatory evacuations in Camarillo Springs, CA neighborhood. Video via @ABC7https://t.co/m2zMqaoQ1G— BuzzFeed Storm (@BuzzFeedStorm) December 2, 2014
Mud flow on Lake Hughes Rd., 1/4 mile south of Elizabeth Lake Rd. Road section is closed. #LArain pic.twitter.com/55STjUL4CV— LA Co Public Works (@LAPublicWorks) December 2, 2014
— Gordon Tokumatsu (@GordonNBCLA) December 2, 2014
The storm is good news for ski resorts, which suffered from snow shortages over the 2013-2014 ski season. Live cams from resorts such as Bear Mountain and Mammoth Mountain showed a blanket of show.
While the storm delighted some Californians, others struggled to readjust to rainfall.
I'm really loving this rain.Makes me feel like I'm back in my hometown— Chachi Gonzales (@chachigonzales) December 2, 2014
For most places, this is some rain. For some in Los Angeles, this is the apocalypse.— Curtis Armstrong (@curtisisbooger) December 2, 2014
In California there's this wet stuff coming down from the sky. Is this what's called "rain"? LLAP— Leonard Nimoy (@TheRealNimoy) December 2, 2014
Tags: CALIFORNIA DROUGHT, CLIMATE, RAINSTORM, U.S., US & World