February's dry spell broken; widespread rain returns to Bay Area
SAN RAFAEL, Calif. (KTVU) - February finally broke its dry spell on Wednesday, with a storm that brought wind, rain, and winter temperatures.
"We need the rain, it's wonderful, cleans everything, happy to have it for sure," Lia Melendez of San Rafael told KTVU, pulling out her umbrella while grocery shopping.
It wasn't a gully washer but the weather system comes on the heels of two especially warm days that broke high temperature records around the region.
"We had all of our windows open, turned all of our heat off, " Katrina King of San Rafael told KTVU, "and now it's back on! I don't know what to think. Drought, flood, homes moving cliffs sliding, it's off the hook!"
Arriving at about 6 p.m., the wet conditions made for a soggy homeward commute, and bridges were buffeted by strong gusting winds.
At Mt. Tamalpais State Park, those winds howled at higher elevations.
"It's enough to blow the ranger hat off which is why I'm not wearing my Stetson right now," Ranger Cecilia Rejas told KTVU.
The trails have been full of visitors during the dry spell, but were deserted in Wednesday's wet chill.
"Well the newts are out and the frogs are probably happy, " smiled Rejas. "Moisture is good for the upcoming wildflower season, so we're always glad to get moisture here."
But on the Marin headlands, visitors trying to soak up the sights had no sun to go with them.
"We got the good weather all week, " New Zealand visitor Matt Feiock told KTVU as he struggled to take photos in the blustery conditions.
Feiock waited until his last day of vacation to walk across the Golden Gate Bridge but given the conditions, decided it could wait.
"I've been here before and I always love San Fran," he said.
"I would have liked to do the walk, since I never seem to get around to doing it."
The dramatic shift in weather definitely had people talking.
"I think it's insane," laughed Katrina King. "What's going on? it's like one of those movies the Gods have gone mad!"