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Winter storm moves out of San Diego County

Plants are seen in the Lake Hodges area. Feb. 20, 2024.
Carolyne Corelis
Plants are seen in the Lake Hodges area. Feb. 20, 2024.

A winter storm is expected to move out of the region Wednesday but not before it delivered widespread showers in the San Diego area.

As of late afternoon Tuesday, the unsettled atmospheric system, which was expected to linger into midweek, had dropped anywhere from a hundredth of an inch to nearly 1 1/3 inches of rain across San Diego County.

Though the bands of dark clouds were expected to shed less moisture locally than in other Southern California communities to the north, the National Weather Service issued a flood watch for the San Diego region's coastal, inland-valley and mountain communities through Wednesday morning. The rainfall will have the potential to cause flooding and debris flows, including landslides, the federal agency reported.


The snow level was expected to fall as low as the 6,000-foot mark — around the elevation of the highest San Diego-area mountain peaks — by Wednesday morning, forecasters said.

Among the local rainfall totals as of 4 p.m. Tuesday, according to the NWS, were 1.31 inches on Palomar Mountain; 0.97 in Lower Oat Flats; 0.91 on Birch Hill; 0.83 at Camp Pendleton; 0.63 in San Marcos; 0.6 in Encinitas; 0.59 in Carlsbad and Point Loma; 0.58 in Oceanside and Rancho Bernardo; 0.55 at Miramar Lake; 0.53 in Escondido; and 0.5 in Mission Valley and National City.

The precipitation tallies also included 0.48 of an inch in Santee; 0.47 on Mount Woodson; 0.43 in Poway; 0.42 in Granite Hills and at Naval Air Station North Island; 0.41 in Bonsall and Fallbrook; 0.4 in Deer Springs and at San Diego International Airport; 0.38 at Lake Wohlford; 0.35 in Mesa Grande and at Ramona Airport; 0.34 in San Onofre; 0.33 in La Mesa and Vista; 0.31 in Pine Hills; and 0.3 in Rincon Springs and Skyline Ranch.

Other rainfall amounts were 0.29 of an inch in Oak Grove; 0.28 in Flinn Springs and Kearny Mesa; 0.27 on Otay Mountain; 0.26 at Cactus County Park; 0.25 in Alpine, Goose Valley and Ramona; 0.22 in Barona and Chula Vista; 0.21 in Valley Center; 0.2 in Echo Dell; 0.19 in Julian; 0.18 in San Diego Country Estates; 0.17 in Descanso, Dulzura and Warner Springs; 0.16 in Santa Ysabel and on Volcan Mountain; 0.07 in Pine Valley; 0.05 on Mount Laguna and in Ranchita; 0.04 at Brown Field; and 0.01 in Campo and at Coyote Creek.

The rains will weaken Wednesday and dwindle away completely by Thursday, with mild temperatures expected through the weekend, according to the weather service. More light rain is in the forecast for the beginning of next workweek.