Autumn in Sacramento remained an unpredictable roller coaster of temperatures - with September hotter than usual and this month starting out chilly.
In fact, every day this week is predicted to be in the 70s, the National Weather Service says.
It's calling for a high of 74 degrees today - Columbus Day. The rest of the week, it calls for: Tuesday, 72; Wednesday, 75; Thursday, 72; Friday, 73; and Saturday 78.
That's an abrupt turnaround from the 26 days of temperatures of 90 degrees or above in September.
"We were 10 to 20 degrees above normal for almost all of September," said Stefanie Henry, a meteorologist for the National Weather Service in Sacramento. "Now, we're sitting a little bit below normal."
The long string of sizzling days - out of character for Sacramento in September - was the work of a strong, warm high-pressure ridge hovering over the area.
"It was kind of trapped there, in what we call a blocking pattern," Henry said. While the average temperature in September is 87.9 degrees for Sacramento, the area simmered at 100 degrees on Oct. 1 and 2, and at 97 degrees on Oct. 3.
On Oct. 4, Sacramento's high plummeted to 79 degrees, due to a low-pressure system brewing over the Pacific Ocean and wafting ashore, and increased cloud cover, Henry said.
The normal temperature for Sunday is 82 degrees, but the weather service forecast a high of 78 degrees.
Henry predicted more cooling down Monday, as the low pressure ridge moved closer to shore, and a chance of rain in the Northern Sierra and Coastal mountain ranges in the afternoon. Rain in the valley is not likely for Monday and Tuesday, she said.
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