Weather in the Foothills

“’Twas Easter Sunday. The full-blossomed trees
Filled all the air with fragrance and with joy.”
~ Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

Does it ever rain on Easter? I remember a few foggy or cloudy ones, with light drizzle, but a real storm on Easter? Maybe due to the nature of the day, my recollections are based on selected memory … a day filled with celebration.

Preparations started much earlier; a new frilly Easter dress and accessories – hat, gloves, purse and patent leather shoes. Then, Saturday afternoon, the kitchen and its newspaper-covered table were transformed into an art studio/science lab to change an ordinary chicken egg into a custom designed Easter egg. With the smell of vinegar lingering in the air, a few cracked eggs and little hands every color of a rainbow, we were all set.

Time for Easter lily adorned and halleluiah filled Easter services. The day was not complete without its traditional sidekick, the Easter Bunny, bringing “jelly beans, colored eggs, an orchid for your mommy and chocolate bunnies hidden everywhere.”

The date of Easter wanders between the months of March and April. Often you hear comments such as, “Easter is coming late this year” or sometimes the opposite. So, how does See’s Candy, Hallmark Cards, the hens and the Easter Bunny prepare? How do calendar makers know in which square to print Easter?

As with Passover, Easter is based on the lunar calendar – 28 days, not 30 or 31 – so the dates of these holidays will vary.  There is a simple yet impressive formula for calculating the date of Easter: Easter occurs on the first Sunday after the paschal (Passover) full moon that occurs on or after the vernal equinox (first day of spring).

Passover began last Monday evening, April 14. On this Jewish day of commemoration, a “heavenly gift” arrived. As the sun set, the full moon rose. By midnight, the moon was captured by a total lunar eclipse. Our location was prime for viewing – perfect weather, clear dark skies and mild temperatures. The birds were even singing. Mesmerized in the front yard, with Abby by my side, I watched. By the time the moon was completely in the Earth’s shadow, its color had changed from white to an eerie, out-of-this-world golden one. Pure awesomeness.

Weather-wise the timing of the eclipse was prime because a heavy marine layer has since moved in. The onshore flow will keep beaches foggy and the skies across the inland valleys partly cloudy. A sprinkle or morning drizzle is possible on Friday. Temperatures will reflect these conditions, being eight to 12 degrees below normal. Not much change into next week except for less fog, more clouds and possible rain.

Easter Sunday? Good news … sunny and 80 degrees.


Happy Easter                                                   Pesach Same’ach



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