Ice falls in Hollywood as wild setup fans California blizzards historic heat

Ice fell Thursday near California’s world-famous Hollywood sign, a remarkable wintry scene for a spot overlooking the star-studded Los Angeles neighborhood known for its perpetual sunshine and the warmth of a pool.

And that wasn’t even the weirdest weather we’ve seen across North America this week.

Blizzard warnings crept into the San Diego area for the first time on record, as dozens of communities across the eastern United States recorded their warmest temperatures on record in February.

READ MORE: Blizzard near Los Angeles? Bizarre pattern creates historic heat, ice storm

It’s a pattern we’ll remember for years as we wrap up the final days of meteorological winter.

This hyperactive weather south of the border is due to the same build-up that brought a highly disruptive winter storm to Ontario earlier this week. A treacherous mix of snow, ice pellets and freezing rain cut power for thousands in southern Ontario, making travel almost impossible at times.

Cold temperatures behind the storm blanketed Canada coast-to-coast to end the week. Friday’s warning map showed a spate of cold weather alerts stretching from Whistler, British Columbia, to Gander, Newfoundland.

California Blizzard Alerts

California Blizzard Alerts

Active weather across Canada was just part of the incredible period of extremes we’ve seen across the continent this week.

A sharp depression in the western United States sent unseasonably cold air deep into the heart of sunny California, bringing snow to many of the state’s higher elevations and even triggering snowstorm warnings near Los Angeles for the first time since 1989.

Local residents near the iconic Hollywood sign, nestled in the Santa Monica Mountains of northwest Los Angeles, widely reported wintry rainfall falling in the area Thursday morning.

The cold and snow pushed even further into unusual territory by the end of the week, forcing a release from the US National Weather Service in San Diego the bureau’s first-ever snowstorm warning to cover the San Bernardino County Mountains.



Up to two meters of wind-driven snow could cover the ground in some mountainous regions of Southern California by Saturday morning.

WATCH: Snowfall in California welcomed by some, feared by others

Click here to watch the video

Warmer temperatures nearer the coast pushed thunderstorms in southern and central parts of the state.

A possible tornado made landfall near Santa Cruz, about 70 miles (110 km) south of San Francisco, during a storm in the early hours of the morning on Friday. The US Storm Prediction Center reported another possible tornado in coastal Los Angeles County on Thursday.

Farther east, a major heat flare blanketed parts of the southeastern United States as a high-altitude ridge of high pressure combined with southerly winds pouring into Ontario’s winter storm.

Afternoon temperatures rose into the high 20s on Wednesday and Thursday, even breaking through the 30 degree mark in many places. Such high temperatures are more common in late May and early June in the US Southeast



Dozens of cities from Mississippi to Maryland broke or shattered their all-time monthly high temperature records in February.

The cities of Atlanta, Georgia; Nashville, Tennessee; and Raleigh, North Carolina all experienced their warmest-ever February temperatures. Jackson, Mississippi broke its record Thursday with a searing high of 30.5 °C (87 °F).

The monthly high temperature record fell as far as Washington’s Dulles Airport, which is about 40 km west of the capital. The temperature there reached 26.6 °C (80 °F) on Thursday, far exceeding the airport’s seasonal high of about 8.8 °C (48 °F) for that date.

READ MORE: Stay alert: Another violent storm to eye Ontario early next week



Conditions will gradually settle across California as this weekend’s bottom moves east, and temperatures in the eastern half of the US will briefly drop to more seasonal levels this weekend before returning to spring-like warmth next week.

A strong Colorado low will develop this weekend as this western trough crosses the Rockies. We’ll be monitoring this low track towards southern Ontario early next week and potentially bringing another round of big winter weather to the region.

Mount Diablo, California thumbnail image courtesy of Julie Satchel.


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