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Storm totals: March 20th-22nd, 2011

Posted March 22, 2011, 11:37 PM.

The first storm of the spring was cold, blustery and winter-like and left up to two inches of rainfall in Southern California's inland valleys.

It was also the first major storm of March, following two minor ones, and the first substantial rainfall since February 25th-27th. The plentiful rainfall from this storm made this the first wet March since 2006. The precipitation is not done, either, as at least two more storms are lined up for the last ten days of the month.

Rainfall for the storm was generally between one and two inches. Lake Elsinore recorded the most of the 15 WeatherCurrents stations with 2.07", and Riverside the least at 0.95".

Other substantial totals were recorded in De Luz (1.78"), East San Jacinto (1.74", courtesy of Monty Parrott), Murrieta (1.71"), the Temecula Valley Wine Country (1.66", courtesy of Jim Sappington), and Wildomar (1.64").

All of the other WeatherCurrents communities were below one and half inches. Rainfall predictions before Sunday were for up to 1.5" in some areas and 2" in others.

Heavy wind gusts preceded the storm, and they continued through Sunday night. Peak winds gusts were in the 30's (mph) in many locations, and in the 20's in others.

Rainfall was heavy Sunday night and Monday morning, then degenerated into scattered showers and some thunderstorms throughout the day. The showers finally ended with one more round on Tuesday morning.

Pea-sized hail was reported in San Jacinto, Valle Vista and Moreno Valley Monday afternoon and evening. Beaumont had rain mixed with slush on Monday morning, around 11:25am.

Lightning strikes near Moreno Valley forced the shutdown of our station there for a time Sunday night, with power spikes causing minor outages.

WeatherCurrents' Perris station also had an outage during the storm, but it was not immediately known if it was rainfall or power-related.

WeatherCurrents' San Jacinto site was in the middle of a prolonged outage and was not operational during the storm.

The following rainfall totals were recorded Sunday through Tuesday morning:

Location Storm  Season  Source
Lake Elsinore 2.07"  22.82"  WeatherCurrents
De Luz 1.78"  29.87"  WeatherCurrents
East San Jacinto 1.74"  18.17"  Monty Parrott
Northwest Murrieta 1.71"  19.23"  WeatherCurrents
Temecula Valley Wine Country 1.66"  24.16"  Jim Sappington
Wildomar 1.64"  18.10"1  WeatherCurrents
San Bernardino 1.41"  4.79"2  WeatherCurrents
South Temecula 1.40"  21.58"  WeatherCurrents
Menifee 1.38"  14.03"  WeatherCurrents
French Valley 1.34"  16.20"  WeatherCurrents
Beaumont 1.30"  19.76"  WeatherCurrents
Perris 1.24"  14.13"  WeatherCurrents
South Fallbrook 1.23"  22.51"  WeatherCurrents
East Hemet 1.20"  15.55"  WeatherCurrents
Eastern Murrieta 1.19"  16.01"  Reginald Stanley
Moreno Valley 1.16"  16.51"3  WeatherCurrents
Riverside (Canyon Crest) 0.95"  13.71"  WeatherCurrents
  1. Wildomar totals are not complete for October.
  2. San Bernardino totals began February 11, 2011.
  3. Moreno Valley storm totals are from a manual rain gauge.
Storm totals on March 21st

Storm totals, March 21st (courtesy National Weather Service)

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The French Valley, California weather pages are a service of WeatherCurrents. French Valley is located in southwestern Riverside County, California, north of Temecula, east of Murrieta, and south of Winchester. French Valley is bordered by Lake Skinner.
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