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Pacific storm brings rain to California

Rain falls over Pasadena in this January 2015 file photo. The Los Angeles region is still awaiting significant rain after the system's eastward progression stalled late Thursday, but flood watches are still posted for fire-scarred mountains.
Rain falls over Pasadena in this January 2015 file photo. The Los Angeles region is still awaiting significant rain after the system's eastward progression stalled late Thursday, but flood watches are still posted for fire-scarred mountains.
Maya Sugarman/KPCC

The first in a series of Pacific storms has been bringing rain in varied amounts to many parts of California.

The National Weather Service said Friday the very slow-moving system brought plenty of rain overnight to San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara counties.

But parts of the Central Coast farther north have had lesser amounts, resulting in cancellation of a flash flood watch for the huge wildfire burn scar in the Big Sur region.

San Francisco Bay Area meteorologists report widespread precipitation with rainfall rates generally light.

The Los Angeles region is still awaiting significant rain after the system's eastward progression stalled late Thursday, but flood watches are still posted for fire-scarred mountains.

In the interior, the National Weather Service reports locations in the southern Sierra Nevada north of Kings Canyon have had between half an inch and an inch of rain, while the west side of the San Joaquin Valley has collected nearly a half-inch.

So how about that drought?

California is still substantially in a drought, but don't call it parched.

A year ago almost the entire state was in severe, extreme or exceptional drought. But since then, enough rain has fallen that a chunk of northwestern California is now back to normal, and the worst levels of drought designation have retreated somewhat to the central and southern regions.

The storm moving into the state early Friday will be followed by more fronts during the weekend.

The National Weather Service said there would be potential for moderate to heavy rainfall and thunderstorms as the system tapped subtropical moisture and remnants of moisture from former Hurricane Seymour in the Pacific Ocean west of Baja California.

Other storms are expected to follow during the weekend, with potential for snow in sections of the Sierra Nevada, which normally stores a huge amount of the state's water supply in the form of a winter snowpack that eventually runs off into major reservoirs.