Here’s Advice for When SoCal’s Coldest Storm of Winter Season Hits

National Weather Service meteorologist tells Los Angeles: ”Maybe postpone any hiking trips or anything in the mountains until later tomorrow.”

The coldest storm of the winter season is expected to bring chilly temperatures, rain, and snow to the Los Angeles County mountains beginning Tuesday, according to a National Weather Service advisory issued this week.

The region could see one to three inches of snow, with the San Gabriel Mountains receiving up to five inches of snow, the advisory warned. Affected mountain areas include San Luis Obispo County, Santa Barbara County, Ventura County, and Los Angeles County excluding the Santa Monica range.

“It doesn’t take a whole lot of snow for [traffic] to come to a grinding halt,” said Ryan Kittell, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service, Oxnard. “So if you’re kind of stuck in there and have to go through the back roads, you could be stuck up there for a few hours—if not longer.”

Snow, ice, and high winds up to 50 miles per hour in some areas, will cause dangerous driving conditions along Interstate 5 from the Grapevine to Castaic, Highway 14 through the Soledad Canyon, and Highway 33 across the Ventura County mountains. Traffic slow downs and road closures may also occur depending on how much snow and ice accumulates on the road, NWS officials said.

“It’s a good idea to maybe postpone any hiking trips or anything in the mountains until later tomorrow, or later this week,” Kittell added.

Officials also urge drivers, who are traveling to the mountains, to pack extra food, warm clothing, blankets, and chains for their tires. They also caution motorists to slow down and use caution while driving in these conditions.

The bulk of the storm is expected to take place Tuesday evening.

As for metro areas in L.A. County, Angelenos can expect light showers, some hail, and colder temperatures dropping to as low as 30 degrees in the evening. Temperature highs will be in the low to mid-50s, Kittell said.

The winter advisory is in effect through noon Wednesday.

Temperatures are expected to warm back up beginning Thursday, with highs reaching the low to mid 70s by the weekend.

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