By Sue KILPATRICK
“Summer ends, and Autumn comes, and he who would have it otherwise would have high tide always and a full moon every night.”
— Hal Borland
This past weekend was one of love and discovery. The location was the beach at Avila Bay on the Central Coast and the reason – a family wedding. With the azure-blue sparkling Pacific Ocean and a warm gentle breeze blowing the bride’s veil, the young couple were pronounced husband and wife. During the ceremony a Monarch butterfly fluttered around the formally-dressed, barefoot minister and then continued on its journey south. Yes! This is it … I found autumn on the West Coast.
In this part of the U.S. we have an expectation of a New England-style season complete with the Fall foliage and early frost. This is not California’s fall. What I have discovered is a season that requires absolutely no apologies and should never be compared. Before I continue on about autumn in California, what’s going with our weather?
This week, so far, has brought cool, cloudy days, with a chance of drizzle. But, hold on to your hats and don’t put away the sunscreen. As I write, a hazardous weather outlook has been issued for southwestern California (that includes us) by the National Weather Service. It states, “There is potential for an extended period of hot and dry conditions Saturday-Tuesday with offshore flow (winds) expected … This pattern has the potential to bring a long duration of heightened fire weather concerns…” Temperatures should peak on Sunday at 100 degrees and slightly cool into next week. Lows will be around 70. These conditions are not unusual for this time of year.
Sept. 22 brought us the first day of autumn and a full harvest moon. Then comes the beautiful clear days, perfect beach weather (butterfly and marine mammal migrations included) and eventually Thanksgiving.
As we came home from our weekend trip we took a detour up a coastal canyon where apples and grapes were being harvested. Our leaves may not change color and fall until winter, but this is California, end of story.
Sue Kilpatrick is a longtime CV resident and amateur weather watcher. Reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org.