Sacramento has received the fourth-largest amount of rain for a season since record-keeping began 140 years ago – and there’s more coming this week.
Weather record-keeping began in 1877 with the arrival of Sgt. R.B. Watkins of the Army Signal Corps. Watkins took the first official weather observation at 4:37 a.m. July, 1, 1877.
The weather office was on the fourth floor of the St. George building, 4th and J streets. The office contained two rooms, one for weather tabulation of rainfall and temperature and the other the living quarters for Watkins.
Since then, there have been eight more locations for the weather service. The office, with a bigger staff and more equipment, is now in Arden Arcade at 3310 El Camino Avenue.
While the science of meteorology is more exact and duties of forecasters have expanded, one thing has not changed since the days of the signal corps: Meteorologists still keep track of rainfall.
April precipitation has boosted Sacramento rainfall totals for the water year – which runs from Oct. 1 through Sept. 30 – to more than 32 inches.
The 2016-17 rainfall total as of Monday is 32.59 inches, which is 1.33 inches from third place on the city’s all-time list of rainy years. Third place was set in 1981-82 when 33.92 inches fell.
The record rainfall year was set in 1982-83 when 36.57 fell, followed closely by 1889-90 when 34.60 fell, second-most all-time.
More rain is probable this week, especially Wednesday. Several storms are lined up in the Pacific Ocean, but the one forecast to come ashore Wednesday night holds the greatest promise for precipitation, the National Weather Service reports.
The detailed, seven-day forecast for the Sacramento region from the NWS:
Monday: Partly sunny, with a high near 68. Calm wind becoming west around 5 mph in the afternoon.
Monday night: Increasing clouds, with a low around 50. West wind 5 to 7 mph becoming calm in the evening.
Tuesday: A 20 percent chance of rain after 11 a.m. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 65. Calm wind becoming southeast 5 to 8 mph in the morning. New precipitation amounts of less than a tenth of an inch possible.
Tuesday night: A 20 percent chance of showers. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 54. South wind around 9 mph. New precipitation amounts of less than a tenth of an inch possible.
Wednesday: A 40 percent chance of rain. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 67. South wind 7 to 17 mph, with gusts as high as 24 mph.
Wednesday night: Rain likely. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 51. Chance of precipitation is 70 percent.
Thursday: Showers, with possible thunderstorms, likely. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 64. Chance of precipitation is 70 percent.
Thursday night: A chance of showers. Partly cloudy, with a low around 44.
Friday: Mostly sunny, with a high near 67.
Friday night: Partly cloudy, with a low around 45.
Saturday: Mostly sunny, with a high near 71.
Saturday night: Partly cloudy, with a low around 47.
Sunday: A slight chance of rain. Partly sunny, with a high near 67.