Three back-to-back-to-back storms -- two of them expected to be heavy -- took aim at the Southland Thursday, promising rainfall of varying degrees from Friday afternoon into next week, the National Weather Service said.
The first of those storms will spread rain into the Central Coast early Friday morning, with rain reaching Los Angeles County in the afternoon and turning into showers Friday night. That storm is expected to produce between a half-inch and an inch of rain in coastal and valley locations, and between 1 and 2 inches in the foothills and mountains, according to the NWS.
The snow level is generally expected to be between 4,000 and 5,000 feet but could drop below 4,000 feet by late Friday, which would cause snow to accumulate on portions of Interstate 5 near The Grapevine, the NWS warned.
Additionally, "there is a possibility that snow could affect the 14 Freeway across Soledad Pass," an NWS advisory said.
Above the 5,000-foot level, several inches of snow are expected, according to the NWS.
NWS forecasters said the atmosphere behind the impending frontal system will remain moist, which could produce at least scattered showers across the region Saturday and Saturday night.
Then, "a much stronger and wetter storm system is forecast to affect the region beginning either late Saturday night or early Sunday and continuing into Monday," according to the advisory.
"This system has the potential to be a major winter storm for Southwestern California, bringing widespread heavy rains and mountains snows, with a threat of thunderstorms," the advisory warned.
The NWS said the second storm has the potential to produce "several inches of rain" and "heavy snows in the mountains" while raising the risk of flash flooding, even in areas not previously denuded by wildfire.
Another "significant" storm could hit the region after Monday, but current computer projections are still inconclusive about that system's timing and intensity, according to the NWS.
Temperature highs today and over the following several days generally will be in the high 50s and low 60s.