Weather in the Foothills

“Snow is … the once upon a time of weather.”
Sean Hurley- playwright and radio journalist

Once upon a time in the remote and rural community of La Crescenta it snowed — really snowed! Nestled at the base of the San Gabriel Mountains at 1,200 to 2,000 feet, it is not unheard of; just in the past weeks, two brief snow/hail storms have moved through the area. The one of which I speak fell upon us almost 60 years ago.

One Monday morning, snowmen arose like magic on lawns in La Crescenta. To a 6 year old’s eyes it was magic. Meteorological data reveals, on January 22, 1962, a winter storm out of the Gulf of Alaska moved in during the night and stalled over the Crescenta Valley. By sunrise close to a foot of snow blanketed the higher elevations. Kindergarten memory has the snow depth at 2 feet deep! The first unofficial “3-day weekend” came to be as my sister ran through the house yelling, “It’s snowing, it’s snowing!” Out the door we ran in our pajamas and jumped off the porch into snow. A “snow day” was declared. There would be no school for us kids, although my father shoveled the long driveway to get to work.

Our house was located on Santa Carlotta, now just 3 houses from the newly opened Ramsdell Ski. The ‘big kids’ pulled the antique wooden skis from the rafters and hit the slopes. After mittens were found, the rest of us got busy populating the neighborhood with snow people and I recall a snow dog as well.

An interesting side-note to that day… Richard Nixon, campaigning for governor, was in Sunland riding in a March of Dimes parade. He waved from an open car to those along Foothill’s snowy parade route.

A chance for rain begins again tomorrow, Friday night, with showers lingering into Sunday. No snow is expected, just an average 1-2 inch rain storm. Put the skis and mittens away, for now.

Sue Kilpatrick is a Crescenta Valley resident and  Official Skywarn Spotter for the  National Weather Service. Reach her at