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2014-2015 Rain Season Review and Totals

By Reginald Stanley. Posted July 1, 2015, 12:33 PM.

The region saw a fourth consecutive water year to feature below-average rainfall during the 2014-15 season.

El Nino conditions were present in the equatorial Pacific during the 2014-15 winter, but the strength of the El Nino was weak. The El Nino reached peak strength in December, and has remained just above the weak threshold ever since. The El Nino may even continue into the 2015-16 season, but this is uncertain.

However, season totals were generally slightly higher than in the previous several rainy seasons. Unlike last year, six of the twenty-one active Weathercurrents stations managed to record season totals exceeding 10 inches. Despite this, such totals were still well below long-term averages. The highest season total was recorded in Hemet, with 15.13 inches - benefited from summer thunderstorms. The lowest complete season total was 6.23 inches at San Diego's City Heights station. Most WeatherCurrents stations recorded season totals between 7 and 10 inches. For some locations, season averages have been skewed too low recently and thus this season's rainfall may actually appear to be above average at those locations.

The majority of the season's rainfall fell in December, with most other months being very warm and dry. May 2015 was very atypical - it was the first cooler-than-normal month in nearly a year-and-a-half, and also featured a number of decent late-season storms. Season totals were boosted at the last minute when thunderstorms brought scattered rain to the region on June 30th, the very last day of the water year.

As the fourth consecutive winter to feature below-average rainfall across the region, drought conditions have worsened and water restrictions put into effect. Many locations in Southern California had also observed four consecutive below-average rain seasons only beginning a decade ago, lasting from 2005-06 through 2008-09. That drought was not as severe, however. A similar string of below-average seasons occurred from 1986-87 through 1990-91, according to records from Downtown Los Angeles and San Diego.

The water year measuring period in Southern California runs from July 1st through June 30th.

The rain season in Southern California runs from July 1st through June 30th.

Here are the season totals for the WeatherCurrents network and associates:

Location 2014-2015 Season Average Source
East Hemet 15.13"  11.50"  WeatherCurrents
East Highland 13.83"  N/A Peter Michas
Beaumont (Cherry Valley) 13.50"  N/A WeatherCurrents
De Luz 13.36"  14.28"  WeatherCurrents
Temecula Valley Wine Country 13.04"  N/A Jim Sappington
East San Jacinto 12.23"  10.88"  Monty Parrott
San Bernardino 12.02"  N/A WeatherCurrents
French Valley 11.52"  7.46"  WeatherCurrents
South Temecula 10.09"  12.52"  WeatherCurrents
Anza 9.42"  N/A WeatherCurrents
Northwest Murrieta 9.41"  13.55"  WeatherCurrents
Simi Valley 9.36"  N/A WeatherCurrents
South Fallbrook 9.27"  14.33"  WeatherCurrents
Jurupa Valley 9.03"  N/A WeatherCurrents
Moreno Valley 8.78"  9.13"  WeatherCurrents
Riverside (Canyon Crest) 7.96"  7.09"  WeatherCurrents
Perris 7.40"  8.03"  WeatherCurrents
Wildomar 7.38"  9.44"  WeatherCurrents
Riverside (Presidential Park) 7.28"  N/A WeatherCurrents
Lake Elsinore 6.81"  10.29"  WeatherCurrents
Menifee (Sun City) 6.55"  7.54"  WeatherCurrents
San Diego (City Heights) 6.23"  N/A WeatherCurrents
Central Murrieta 5.94" 1 N/A Reginald Stanley
  • 1. Season began on December 5th, 2014.
  • Note: Season Averages were only given for stations with at least five complete years of data. Even these averages may be skewed from many dry years or unusually wet ones, and should not be interpreted as the actual average rainfall for those communities.

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