Rain moves into SoCal Sunday, could get heavy into Monday

(Photo by Ted Soqui/Corbis via Getty Images)

The high pressure system that brought  mild conditions to Southern California over the weekend is moving out, and rain is on the way starting late Sunday, bringing winter conditions for Christmas shopping and travel, forecasters say.

The rain will be light at first but is forecast to turn to heavier showers overnight, National Weather Service Meteorologist Carol Smith said.

There is a slight chance of thunderstorms Monday afternoon and evening, Smith said.

Accumulations could reach 1-1 1/4 inches in the LA Basin, with more in the San Fernando and Santa Clarita valleys. Mountains could receive up to 1 1/2 inches of rain with 2-6 inches of snow from 5,000- to 7,000-feet elevations and 6-12 inches above 7,000 feet, Smith said.

Temperatures will be in the mid- to upper 60s Sunday in the L.A. Basin, with 50s Sunday night and about 60 Monday.

Meanwhile, a cold air mass is expected to move over the area Wednesday, leading to a colder rain storm and lower snow level. There is a
chance rain will begin that morning, but is more likely to start in the afternoon and continue into Thursday.

The snow level could drop to 4,000 feet or lower from this storm and accumulations of rain and snow could be similar to the Sunday-Monday storm, she said.

Highs Wednesday are expected to be in the upper 50s in the L.A. Basin, with Wednesday night lows in the 40s and Thursday's high around 60, Smith said.