By Sue KILPATRICK
“Listen! The wind is rising and the air is wild with leaves, We have had our summer evenings, now for October eves.”
— Humbert Wolfe, English poet 1926
Maybe not this week or next, but with historical certainty we can expect the Santa Ana winds to come blasting through the San Gabriel Mountain passes into the Crescenta Valley with hurricane force. These winds form when a high pressure system settles over Utah and Nevada, low pressure has formed off the coastline, and the Mojave and Sonoran deserts have lost their summer heat. Combine all these factors and the potential for “The Perfect Wind” has been created.
The Native American Indians living in the southwest spoke of them with both fear and reverence. Spanish explorers who camped near the Santa Ana River experienced these fierce winds blowing down the canyon and named them after this location. Mother Nature tries to keep everything balanced and equal – the highs flow into the lows in this attempt. As the air is channeled through the passes, the wind velocity and temperature increase. Crescenta Valley is at the receiving end and is hit with damaging winds, high fire danger and beautiful clear blue skies. As quickly as the Santa Ana’s arrive, they also leave. Weather is like that!
After I had started writing about winds, I wake up Monday morning to heavy fog and a steady light rain. Should I change my subject? No need, the weather will change again! La Crescenta officially received its first measurable “real rain” of the season. Last week’s thunderstorms were brief and evaporated quickly leaving my rain gauge dry. So far this week, I have recorded .24 inches of rain. As the week progresses more rain and cooler temperatures are expected with highs in the 60s and lows in the 50s. The weekend prediction is for highs in the 80s and then cooling down again by the first of the week.
Oh, and yes – there is another possibility for rain by mid week! It was once said by an unknown and wise writer, “Don’t sit under an umbrella waiting for it to rain.”
Sue Kilpatrick is a longtime CV resident and amateur weather watcher. Reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org.