Orange County will have a brief break from the rain, with sunny skies in the forecast for Christmas Day. The recent showers dropped around a half inch of rain in the region and more moisture could roll through beginning late Tuesday night.
However wet it may seem now, it’s nothing compared with what the West Coast went through way back in 1861, when it began to rain on Christmas Eve and continued to pour for 30 straight days.
The Noachian Deluge of California killed 20 people in Orange County and dropped 35 inches of rain in Los Angeles by the time it ended on Jan. 23, 1862. The Santa Ana River ran four feet deep and sent a sheet of water three miles beyond its banks to what is now Fullerton, according to the National Weather Service. Flooding caused the mouth of the Los Angeles River to shift from Venice to Wilmington.
That kind of weather chaos is not currently in the cards, according to the NWS forecast for Orange County:
Monday night: Partly cloudy, with a low around 46. East wind around 5 mph.
Christmas Day: Mostly sunny, with a high near 65. East wind around 5 mph becoming calm in the morning.
Tuesday night: Showers likely, mainly after 4 a.m. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 46. Calm wind becoming east around 5 mph in the evening. Chance of precipitation is 60 percent.
Wednesday: Showers likely, mainly before 10 a.m. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 61. Calm wind becoming west around 5 mph in the afternoon. Chance of precipitation is 70 percent.
Wednesday night: A 20 percent chance of showers before 10 p.m. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 42. Northwest wind around 5 mph.