Rain expected to give way to wind Thursday

The storm that moved in Tuesday night lived up to its billing, delivering about three-quarters of an inch of rain in the Sacramento area and more than an inch in some foothill locations.

Downtown Sacramento recorded 0.78 inches and Sacramento Executive Airport recorded 0.67 inches for the 24-hour period ending shortly before 7 p.m. today, while 0.87 inches fell in Elk Grove during the same period. In foothill areas, 1.44 inches was reported at Auburn Dam, 1.14 inches in Newcastle and 1.09 inches in Placerville, said Stefanie Henry, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service.

The storm also brought rain instead of snow to much of the Sierra, with areas such as Blue Canyon receiving 2.1 inches of rain. Although ski resorts were posting photos of falling snow on their websites, Henry said most mountain areas had received less than a foot of snow from this storm. Snow showers were expected to continue through the night.

As the rain moves out of the Valley on Thursday, winds are expected to increase. North and northwest winds 13 mph to 22 mph, with gusts as high as 32 mph are forecast for Sacramento. Stronger winds of 20 mph to 30 mph, with gusts up to 40 mph are expected on the west side of the Valley, affecting areas such as Woodland. High winds also are forecast for foothill areas such as Placerville on Thursday night.

High temperatures in the mid to upper 60s are forecast for the Sacramento region Thursday, with lows Thursday night dropping into the upper 30s. Similar temperatures are expected through Sunday, with Friday likely to be the warmest day, Henry said.

The next storm is expected to arrive late next week. Thanksgiving Day could be wet, Henry said.