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High wind, moderate rain in Sacramento as routes reopen to traffic over Sierra

A rainy, early January day around Sacramento

From the swift American River to an uprooted tree toppling onto a home, Sacramento is experiencing a windy and wet Wednesday, Jan. 4, 2017.
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From the swift American River to an uprooted tree toppling onto a home, Sacramento is experiencing a windy and wet Wednesday, Jan. 4, 2017.

A steady drip, drip, drip of rainfall and the sound of high wind through the trees occurred through the night in Sacramento as a warm, winter storm made its way through the region.

The stormy weather resulted in about an inch of rain in Sacramento -- and a mighty gust recorded at Sacramento International Airport. More rain is expected Wednesday, but an even wetter system is expected over the weekend and Monday when two to three inches of precipitation could be recorded in the Sacramento region.

Current Sacramento traffic conditions | Current weather conditions

Northern California is currently in a very wet weather pattern, soggy conditions that are predicted to extend into next week, according to the National Weather Service.

Snow continued to fall in the Sierra Nevada. Traffic was held in both directions for a time Wednesday morning on Highway 50 and Interstate 80 over the summits due to avalanche control and poor visibility. There are still maximum controls for trucks, however.

In addition, chains were required on both I-80 and Highway 50 in the mountains.

Sacramento received about an inch of rain from the storm that began on Tuesday. Amounts were split about evenly: a half-an-inch on Tuesday and a half-an-inch from midnight to 6 a.m. Wednesday. Look for more showers Wednesday before skies begin to clear Thursday, leading to mostly sunny skies on Friday.

Other 24-hour precipitation readings as of 6 a.m. Wednesday: 0.79 in Elk Grove, 0.91 at Sacramento Executive Airport, 0.99 in Rancho Cordova, 1.03 in Fair Oaks, 0.71 in Rio Linda, 1.03 in Orangevale, 0.78 at Folsom Lake, 0.98 in Roseville, 0.75 in Loomis and 1.53 in Auburn.

Perhaps more impressive than the rainfall were the windy conditions during the nighttime hours. Indicative of the blustery night was a reading at Sacramento International Airport at 9:53 p.m. when a gust of 51 mph was recorded.

Other gusty readings shortly before 10 p.m.: 35 mph at Sacramento’s Executive Airport, 37 mph at Mather Field and 46 mph McClellan Airfield.

Also around 10 p.m., a large backyard tree was blown over by the high winds, breaking a window on a house and crunching a barbecue in the 7400 block of Candlewood Way.

Frank Gehrke of the California Department of Water Resources said on Tuesday, Jan. 3, 2017, that considering the amount of bare ground apparent in the Sierra Nevada not long ago, the snowpack and water content shown in the first official measureme

Sacramento's many trees make the city especially susceptible to street flooding. Residents should proactively reduce the risk by clearing leaves before the storm. Watch for more tips on how to protect your home from flooding. Featuring Sammy Caiol

The National Weather Service is predicting that on Sunday and Monday the snow level will be high and rainfall amounts in the valley and foothills will be heavy. The detailed, 7-day forecast for the Sacramento region from the NWS:

Wednesday: Rain before 10am, then showers after 10am. High near 54. South wind 7 to 17 mph, with gusts as high as 23 mph. Chance of precipitation is 90%. New precipitation amounts between a tenth and quarter of an inch possible.

Wednesday night: A 50 percent chance of showers. Cloudy, with a low around 40. Calm wind. New precipitation amounts of less than a tenth of an inch possible.

Thursday: A 30 percent chance of showers, mainly before 10am. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 50. West southwest wind 5 to 7 mph becoming north northwest in the afternoon. New precipitation amounts of less than a tenth of an inch possible.

Thursday night: Partly cloudy, with a low around 33. North northwest wind around 6 mph.

Friday: Mostly sunny, with a high near 49. North northwest wind around 6 mph.

Friday night: A slight chance of showers before 10pm, then a chance of rain after 10pm. Cloudy, with a low around 40. Chance of precipitation is 40%.

Saturday: Rain. High near 52. Chance of precipitation is 80%.

Saturday night: Rain. Cloudy, with a low around 49.

Sunday: Rain. The rain could be heavy at times. Cloudy, with a high near 59.

Sunday night: Rain. Cloudy, with a low around 51.

Monday: Rain. Cloudy, with a high near 56.

Monday night: A chance of showers. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 45.

Tuesday: A chance of showers. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 53.

This animated video from the National Weather Service is part of "Turn Around, Don't Drown" campaign put forward by the National Weather Service. It shows the potential danger presented when vehicles are driven into flooded conditions and offers a

Watch the Caltrans tow-plow in action. This is the first to be put into service in California. Travelers should be aware that the snow-removal machine takes up two full lanes of highway.

Here's how it looked driving through the mountains on Jan. 1, 2017, Video shows westbound I-80 at Soda Springs on New Year's, I-80 at Applegate on Monday and heavy snow fall in the Sierra on I-80 on Tuesday.

Bill Lindelof: 916-321-1079, @Lindelofnews

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