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Hurricane Hilary barrels toward California

The hurricane is expected to weaken, but the National Weather Service warned that the storm was expected to bring “significant impacts” to the Southwestern U.S.
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Tropical storm warnings extended into Southern California Friday night as Hurricane Hilary, which has been bringing winds and rain to Mexico, approaches the United States.

It’s expected to weaken and become a tropical storm by the time it reaches Southern California, which is forecast to occur by Sunday night.

The storm will bring high winds, up to around 50 mph, but rain and flooding are chief concerns, according to the forecasters.

Officials in Los Angeles, San Diego and other places urged people to take the storm seriously, and to be prepared for flooding and power outages.

“This is real,” Chris Heiser, executive director for the San Diego Office of Emergency Services, said at a news conference.

“This is not like the other storms we’ve experienced. It’s a huge footprint, it goes all the way from the desert out into the ocean,” he said.

Las Vegas and other parts of Nevada also face possible floods, and the governor activated 100 members of the National Guard to assist impacted areas.

What to know about the Category 4 storm

  • Hurricane Hilary strengthened to a Category 4 storm early Friday but is expected to weaken before reaching California.
  • The National Weather Service warned the system was expected to bring "significant impacts" to the Southwest into early next week.
  • The National Hurricane Center issued a tropical storm watch for parts of Southern California, a first for that part of the United States. Watches were later upgraded to a warning.
  • If the system makes landfall in California as a tropical storm, it will be a rarity. The last time this happened in the past century was in Long Beach in 1939.
34d ago / 6:55 AM UTC

Navy ships to leave San Diego bases in advance of Hilary

Naval ships and submarines based in the San Diego area will head to sea until the storm passes, the Navy announced tonight.

The commander of the U.S. 3rd Fleet set “Sortie Condition Alpha” today and San Diego-based ships will get underway tomorrow, the Navy said in a statement.

“In order to ensure the safety of our Sailors and ships, we are taking all necessary measures to mitigate potential damage to infrastructure and Third Fleet vessels caused by the storm,” said Vice Adm. Michael Boyle, commander, U.S. 3rd Fleet. “Safety remains our top priority, and putting all capable ships to sea makes it easier for us to manage the situation ashore,” he added.

Ships and submarines from Naval Base San Diego, Naval Base Coronado and Naval Base Point Loma will leave for the sea, the Navy said. Ships that stay will take precautions to avoid damage, it said.

34d ago / 5:26 AM UTC

SpaceX pushes back launch of satellite-carrying rocket

SpaceX delayed the launch of a satellite-carrying rocket from a base on California’s central coast until at least Monday. The company said conditions in the Pacific could make it difficult for a ship to recover the rocket booster.

34d ago / 4:22 AM UTC

The once-unthinkable could be happening — how?

34d ago / 3:26 AM UTC

Southern California gets tropical storm warning

A tropical storm watch for Southern California was changed tonight to a tropical storm warning, the National Hurricane Center said in a 11 p.m. ET (8 p.m. PT) advisory.

The tropical storm warning now extends from the California-Mexico border to Point Mugu, which is close to Oxnard on the Pacific Coast, and including Catalina Island, the agency said.

Hurricane Hilary is forecast to weaken to a tropical storm by the time it reaches Southern California, which the hurricane center said was forecast to occur by Sunday night.

But heavy rain and possible flooding are a risk for California and other parts of the U.S. Southwest.

34d ago / 3:24 AM UTC

Beyond California: Las Vegas warning of possible floods

While officials in California have been urging people to take Hilary seriously, Las Vegas and other parts of the Southwest also face possible floods.

A likely scenario in Las Vegas is up to 2 1/2 inches of rain through Monday, according to the National Weather Service, but another scenario estimates 3 inches or more.

Las Vegas is under a flood watch from 11 a.m. tomorrow through 5 p.m. Monday, according to the weather service.

It and other parts of Nevada were considered to have a “moderate” flood risk from the storm, according to the National Hurricane Center. Las Vegas’ city government opened a sandbag location.

Nevada Gov. Joe Lombardo said today he was activating 100 National Guard members in advance of the storm making landfall.

The troops will support areas that are impacted by the storm, his office said.

In Arizona, the state Department of Public Safety also warned drivers of rain and urged caution.

34d ago / 2:39 AM UTC

‘It’s a waiting game’ as Hilary moves towards California

The expected impacts from the storm in Southern California were trending a little heavier when it comes to rainfall, the National Weather Service said today.

“Now it’s a waiting game watching it move northwards,” Alex Tardy, senior meteorologist at the weather service in San Diego, said in a video briefing.

The coasts and valleys could see 2 1/2 inches of rain, but at rates of 1/4 to 3/4 of an inch per hour, according to the agency, and the Inland Empire could see 4 inches.

Some mountains could see up to 10 inches of rain, the weather service said. Lower deserts could get up to 7 inches of rain.

Currently a hurricane, it is expected to weaken to a tropical storm before it reaches California. It is expected to reach Southern California by Sunday night, according to the National Hurricane Center.

34d ago / 1:41 AM UTC

Not only amount of rain, but speed poses risk in U.S.

When Hilary reaches Southern California, it will bring estimated maximum winds of 50 mph, a National Hurricane Center official said.

But it’s the rain, and the rate of rain that poses the most risk, National Hurricane Center Deputy Director Jamie Rhome said today.

Some areas will see 2 to 4 inches, others 4 to 6, and some parts of Southern California even showed possibly 10 inches of rain.

“These rainfall amounts are not typical of this area,” Rhome said video briefing. “Not only that, it’s going to come down much faster than what this area is used to seeing.”

Los Angeles, San Diego and Las Vegas were all under a “moderate” risk of floods, and areas like Palm Springs, California, were considered to be at high risk, he said.

34d ago / 1:26 AM UTC

Mexico gets ready for Hilary

Parts of mainland Mexico were prepped for Hilary, with 18,000 soldiers on alert.

On Friday evening, the hurricane was centered about 310 miles south-southwest of Cabo San Lucas, near the southern tip of the Baja peninsula. It was moving northwest at 12 mph and expected to turn more toward the north.

Some Cabo San Lucas schools were being prepared as temporary shelters, said Flora Aguilar, a city official.

In La Paz, the picturesque capital of Baja California Sur state on the Sea of Cortez, police patrolled closed beaches to keep swimmers out of the whipped-up surf. Schools were shut down in five municipalities.

34d ago / 1:01 AM UTC
35d ago / 12:30 AM UTC

‘Potentially unprecedented,’ but mayor says L.A. is prepared

The incoming storm “is potentially an unprecedented extreme weather event” for Los Angeles and the region, but Mayor Karen Bass said that the city is prepared.

“We’re not waiting for the storm to hit,” Bass said at a news conference.

There could be flash flooding across the Los Angeles area, according to the National Weather Service, and there could be tropical-storm force winds.

Los Angeles Fire Department Chief Kristin Crowley said that over 3,500 firefighters are “standing ready” and that it has search and rescue teams that have responded to hurricanes elsewhere in the country.

Los Angeles County could get 2 to 4 inches of rain, and up to 7 inches in parts of the San Gabriel Mountains and foothills, Carol Parks, general manager of the city’s Emergency Management Department, said.

35d ago / 12:15 AM UTC

With storm getting closer, rainfall worries come into focus

With 48 to 60 hours until this event, our high-resolution computer models are showing the areas of greatest concern for rainfall. 

This is the 4KM American NAM model that comes out every six hours.

A computer model shows the areas of greatest concern for rainfall for the California area.
A computer model shows the areas of greatest concern for rainfall for the California area..NBC News

Notice the thin yellow line traveling from the Northern Baja just east of San Diego and Los Angles. This is the spine of very tall mountains known as the Peninsular Range. This is where 6 to 10 inches of rain is expected to fall in a short amount of time.

If there is catastrophic flooding from Hilary, it will happen near or to the east of this yellow strip.

A computer model shows the areas of greatest concern for rainfall for the California area.
A computer model shows the areas of greatest concern for rainfall for the California area..via

Notice much lighter amounts, 1 to 3 inches, closer to the densely populated coastal region. This is still enough for minor flash flooding, debris flows or landslides — but does not carry the same level of concern we have for the high peaks and their east-facing slopes.

35d ago / 12:11 AM UTC

MLB announces doubleheaders for teams in Hilary's path

Baseball teams are making adjustments to fit in their weekend games ahead of Hurricane Hilary.

Several games that had been scheduled for Sunday have been moved up a day, and will become the earlier games of Saturday split doubleheaders.

The league made the following changes:

  • The San Diego Padres’ Sunday home game vs. the Arizona Diamondbacks has been rescheduled for a split doubleheader with starts of 12:10 p.m. PT and 5:40 p.m. PT Saturday.
  • The Los Angeles Angels’ Sunday home game vs. the Tampa Bay Rays has been rescheduled for a split doubleheader with starts of 1:07 p.m. PT and 6:07 p.m. PT on Saturday.
  • The Los Angeles Dodgers’ Sunday home game vs. the Miami Marlins has been rescheduled for a split doubleheader with starts of 12 p.m. PT and 6:10 p.m. PT Saturday.
35d ago / 12:01 AM UTC

Outer bands of Hilary going onshore in Mexico's Baja California

Hurricane Hilary’s outer bands are starting to enter southern parts of Baja California in Mexico, the National Hurricane Center said.

In a 5 p.m. PT update, the center said that Hilary, a Category 4 storm with maximum sustained winds of 130 mph, is likely to cause life-threatening flooding.

The hurricane’s center is expected to move close to the west coast of Baja California over the weekend, according to the Hurricane Center.

But the storm’s effects stretch far from the center. Hurricane-force winds extend outward up to 50 miles, and tropical storm-force winds extend up to 275 miles, the weather agency said.

35d ago / 11:37 PM UTC

Map: Some areas in the storm's path are below sea level

Several cities in southeastern California that are in the current path of of the storm, including Coachella City, are below sea level. The parts of the region are currently forecasted to receive up to five inches of rain during the next five days.

35d ago / 11:13 PM UTC

‘This is real’: San Diego warns to take storm seriously

Officials in San Diego today warned residents to be prepared to shelter in place and take other measures.

“This is real,” Chris Heiser, executive director for the Office of Emergency Services, said at a news conference.

“This is not like the other storms we’ve experienced. It’s a huge footprint, it goes all the way from the desert out into the ocean,” he said.

Hurricane Hilary is a Category 4 storm but is expected to weaken and become a tropical storm before reaching California, according to the National Hurricane Center.

There could be 12 inches of rain in the mountains in a short period of time, Heiser said.

“Our city is downstream. It’s not if you are going to see flooding,” he said, adding people should anticipate possible power outages.

35d ago / 10:24 PM UTC

Tropical storm watch now covers all of Los Angeles County

The National Weather Service today expanded a tropical storm watch to include all of Los Angeles County, as well as other areas.

Tropical storm watches had previously been issued for some parts of the region, but the new one includes the entire county, which has a population of around 10 million people.

A watch means that tropical storm conditions, which include sustained winds of 39 mph to 73 mph, are possible.

35d ago / 10:19 PM UTC

Padres plan doubleheader to get game in before Hilary

35d ago / 10:16 PM UTC

Southern California reaching out to homeless ahead of storm

Using helicopters, bullhorns and people on the ground, officials in Los Angeles County will be reaching out to the homeless in riverbeds and elsewhere to warn about the impending storm, authorities said today.

Last night, aircraft with the Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department looked for encampments and will continue to do so today, Sheriff Robert Luna said at a news conference. Rescue aircraft and swift-water rescue teams will also be on alert, he said.

“We’re trying to move them to safer locations,” Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors Chair Janice Hahn said.

The Los Angeles River is channelized and swells with water during heavy rains.

The most recent count found an estimated 75,520 people in Los Angeles County experience homelessness on any given night. Of those, around 55,155 were unsheltered.

35d ago / 10:06 PM UTC

L.A. County officials urge people to stay off roads during storm's peak

Los Angeles County officials urged people to exercise caution over the weekend and, if possible, stay off roads Sunday and Monday, when rainfall from the storm is expected to reach its peak.

In a news conference this afternoon, representatives from the Office of Emergency Management and the Sheriff’s Department shared preparations as Hurricane Hilary approaches.

Sheriff Robert Luna said Hilary is expected to bring “significant rain, possible flash flooding, severe winds, storm surge, dangerous surf, marine conditions, and even possibly tornadoes.” He urged residents to make preparations, have an emergency plan and check in on friends and family in high-risk areas.

Emergency preparedness resources can be found at Officials also urged residents to sign up for emergency alerts via text, phone or email at

Kevin McGowan, director of the Office of Emergency Management, outlined steps that residents can take to stay safe:

  • Create an evacuation plan.
  • Build an emergency supply kit, including battery backups for essential medical equipment.
  • Stay out of the ocean and floodwaters, and always avoid moving water.
  • Place sand bags in areas prone to flooding around homes and apartments.
  • Never approach downed power lines.
  • Boat operators should evaluate the predicted storm forecast and its impact on local marinas and harbors.
35d ago / 9:39 PM UTC

Tijuana keeping a close eye on the storm

The Mexican government said a weakened Hilary might skim a sparsely populated area on the western edge of the Baja peninsula early Sunday, and then perhaps hit between the Pacific coast cities of Ensenada, and Playas de Rosarito, a beach community on the edge of Tijuana.

Tijuana Mayor Montserrat Caballero Ramirez said the city was tracking the storm closely, clearing out storm drains.

The sprawling border metropolis of 1.9 million is particularly at risk of landslides and flooding, in part because of its hilly terrain. Shacks are perched on cliffs with little vegetation to hold the land in place. In addition, scores of people have been living under tarps on the streets and in canals in flood zones, including migrants who arrive daily from various parts of the world.

The city was in the process Friday of opening four shelters in high-risk zones and was prepared to increase that if needed, once the storm hits, Caballero Ramirez said. City workers also cleared 34 storm drains of trash and debris, and were going to neighborhoods to warn residents.

“We are a vulnerable city being on one of the most visited borders in the world and because of our landscape,” she said. “We don’t know the magnitude yet of what can happen but that’s why we are coordinating with the military and others so we can move immediately with our emergency response protocols if needed.”

Mexico extended its hurricane watches and warnings northward for parts of Baja California peninsula, and also issued a tropical storm watch for parts of mainland Mexico. Some 18,000 soldiers were put on alert.

35d ago / 8:22 PM UTC

Palm Springs music festival scheduled to take place 'rain or shine,' organizers say


The final weekend of Splash House 2023 will take place as scheduled in Palm Springs, "rain or shine," according to the organizers.

They said they're monitoring the storm moving into the area and are looking forward to welcoming guests for the event, which runs Aug. 18-20.

"We know a little moisture doesn't deter you — we've seen you getting down in the pools year after year — and we salute your spirit," the organizers wrote on Instagram. "It's that energy that keeps us going and what already has us thinking through back up plans to give you the party you deserve, just in case."

35d ago / 8:14 PM UTC

Map: Hurricanes and tropical storms are rare in California

35d ago / 8:13 PM UTC

Hurricane Hilary could bring record rainfall to parts of the Southwest

More than a year’s worth of rain could drench parts of Southern California and the Southwest this weekend, as Hurricane Hilary churns in the eastern Pacific Ocean.

Heavy rainfall across the southwestern United States is expected to peak on Sunday and Monday, but could persist through the middle of next week, according to the National Hurricane Center.

“Rare and dangerous flooding will be possible,” the center said Friday in a public advisory, adding that other parts of the West could see rainfall totals of 1 to 3 inches.

Hurricane Hilary, currently a Category 4 storm, is expected to weaken over the weekend as it passes over cooler ocean waters off the California coast, but it could make a rare landfall in Southern California as a tropical storm — the first in the region since 1939. But no matter where Hilary hits land, experts say people across the Baja California peninsula, the Southwestern U.S. and parts of Mexico should prepare for major rainfall and flooding.

Read the full story here.

35d ago / 8:09 PM UTC

Biden says the White House is monitoring Hurricane Hilary

President Joe Biden said Friday that the White House is "closely monitoring" Hurricane Hilary, noting that FEMA has pre-positioned personnel and supplies in the area.

"I urge everyone, everyone in the path of the storm, to take precautions and listen to the guidance from state and local officials," he said.

The remarks came at the beginning of a joint press conference at a Camp David summit with the leaders of Japan and South Korea.

35d ago / 6:27 PM UTC

Hurricane hunter aircraft approaches Hilary

35d ago / 6:20 PM UTC

Azusa residents grab sandbags as they prepare for the storm


Residents in Azusa, a city in the San Gabriel Valley region of Los Angeles County, were grabbing sandbags on Friday in preparation for the storm this weekend.

"Rain is coming, you know," Jose Pasco told NBC Los Angeles. "We want to put something along our patio so the water won't go inside the house."

"I hope it's not that hard," Pasco said about the incoming storm.

A resident named Ron said he's never heard of a storm of this caliber hitting the area.

"I've lived here all my life and I've never seen it," Ron said.

35d ago / 5:43 PM UTC

It's been nearly 84 years since a tropical storm hit California

News of Hurricane Hilary barreling toward Southern California has drawn reminders of "El Cordonazo," a tropical storm that hit the state nearly 84 years ago.

"El Cordonazo," which made landfall in Long Beach in September 1939, is the last tropical storm recorded in California.

Also known as “The Lash of St. Francis,” the storm "lost hurricane status shortly before moving onshore at San Pedro" and caused the greatest September rainfall ever in the area, the National Weather Service said in a document recounting the history of significant weather events in SoCal.

Rainfall in Los Angeles was recorded at 5.4 inches in 24 hours, per the agency's data. Eastern Coachella Valley was under 2 feet of water.

A total of 45 people died in the floods and 48 more died at sea.

"Californians were generally unprepared and were alerted to their vulnerability to tropical storms," the agency said. "In response, the weather bureau established a forecast office for southern California, which began operations in February of 1940."

35d ago / 4:32 PM UTC

Authorities begin preparations for Hilary

35d ago / 4:28 PM UTC

Hilary expected to kick up waves along popular surf spots, but warnings abound

As it moves toward Southern California, Hurricane Hilary could bring impressive surf to beaches along the coast.

According to the Surfer Forecast, a website that tracks surf conditions, on Sunday morning surfers will be able to catch waves up to 8 feet at Long Beach and, as the day progresses, 6-foot waves will swell from Malibu beaches up to Ventura.

Surfer Magazine writes that these waves could make for “great surfing if you can handle the size,” but advises surfers to stay cautious. Popular surfing forecaster WaveCast warned those attempting the surf zone to be on the lookout for rip currents, lightning, rain and wind effects.

Hurricanes create waves that can be ideal for surfers looking to ride the best waves. Last year, East Coast surfers braved rough waters from Hurricane Ian to get to sizable waves in places like the Outer Banks and even in Florida, just days before the storm made landfall.

Though surfing during a hurricane can be fun, it can also be deadly. In 2011, two surfers were killed in rough waves in north Florida during Hurricane Irene.

35d ago / 4:19 PM UTC

Airlines offer flexible travel policies to impacted customers


As airlines continue to monitor Hurricane Hilary, some are offering flexible travel options to those whose flights may be impacted by the storm.

United Airlines is allowing customers flying in and out of San José del Cabo International Airport (SJD), at the southern tip of Baja, to reschedule their trips at no cost.

Southwest Airlines is offering the same option so long as the new flight is booked within 14 days of the original date of travel.

Alaska Airlines is offering similar options and is including those flying in and out of Loreto International Airport, in Mexico, as well as SJD through Aug. 25, according to their website.

35d ago / 4:18 PM UTC

A heat dome and a hurricane

A giant heat dome over the middle of the country is partly to blame for Hilary’s unusual path toward Southern California, according to hurricane experts.

The heat dome, created by a high-pressure system trapped in place, is expected to bring stiflingly hot temperatures to large portions of the central and southeastern United States through the weekend. But this high-pressure system and its associated winds are also influencing Hurricane Hilary’s movements, essentially pulling the storm toward California.

“It’s moving further east than it would normally go as it travels north,” said Hugh Willoughby, a research professor in the Department of Earth & Environment at Florida International University.

Tropical cyclones that develop in the eastern Pacific Ocean can wander north off the coast of California, but they typically get pushed west, he added. This time, however, Hilary is turning northwest and barreling up the coast.

“Normally they would go by and out to sea,” Willoughby said, “but this is further east than the normal north-going path, which is why we’re seeing it in California.”

Forecasters at the National Hurricane Center said the storm is expected to approach the central Baja California peninsula on Saturday before moving inland over Southern California Sunday night.

35d ago / 3:49 PM UTC

NHC issues first tropical storm watch for parts of Southern California

A tropical storm watch is now in effect from the California-Mexico border to the county lines between Orange and Los Angeles counties, as well as for Catalina Island, the National Hurricane Center announced this morning.

This is the first time the NHC has issued a tropical storm watch for this region of the country.

This kind of alert is typically used to warn that tropical storm conditions are possible in the designated watch area within 48 hours.

35d ago / 2:52 PM UTC

Why California's mountains are at risk of heavy rainfall

The topography of Southern California is going to dictate who is most at risk for destructive flash flooding.

The Santa Rosa mountain range east of San Diego runs north-south for 30 miles with a maximum height of over 8,698 feet at Toro Peak. Those areas could see the brunt of the rainfall thanks to orographic lift, which is when air is pushed by the wind up a mountain. When that happens, the air cools and condenses, often resulting in heavy rainfall. 

In this case, the lift will be maximized over a large area, and rainfall rates are expected to reach 3 inches per hour at the peak of the storm Sunday night. 

This is why the National Weather Service issued a rare Day 3 High Risk of flash flooding that includes Cleveland National Forest and a good part of the Sunrise Highway. The heaviest runoff and mud/debris flows will be on the eastern slopes of the Santa Rosa Mountains. 

If the state record of 14 inches from a tropical system is to broken by Hilary, it will happen there. 

35d ago / 2:49 PM UTC

'Nearly impossible' to predict where Hilary will make landfall

As Hurricane Hilary charges toward the southern tip of Mexico’s Baja California peninsula, forecasters say it’s still “nearly impossible” to predict where the storm could collide with the coastline.

The hurricane's current forecasted path shows it passing along the coast of Baja, weakening as it moves north to Southern California, according to the National Hurricane Center. Hilary could become the first tropical storm to make landfall in Southern California in 84 years, since September 1939. But where exactly landfall will occur is still up in the air.

Regardless of where the storm hits, forecasters said people across the Baja California Peninsula and the southwestern United States should be prepared for heavy rainfall, flash flooding and other significant impacts.

“Hilary’s exact landfall probably won’t make much difference when it comes to the expected hazards and impacts in the region,” NHC officials said Friday in a forecast discussion.

35d ago / 1:22 PM UTC

National Weather Service says some areas could see more than 10 inches of rain

35d ago / 1:15 PM UTC

Hilary forecast to test rainfall records

Daily, monthly and state rainfall records are all in jeopardy as Hilary heads toward California.

Some places, like Death Valley and Palm Springs, could see up to three years' worth of rain in the span of just a few days. Flash flooding is possible.

While rain will be the greatest risk, high winds are also forecast. There is more uncertainty associated with which areas might experience the strongest winds, which is highly dependent on the track of the storm.

Wind gusts of 30-50 mph will be possible across Southern California, including across Los Angeles and Ventura counties.

35d ago / 12:42 PM UTC

Hilary intensified rapidly but is expected to weaken

Hilary has rapidly intensified in just 24 hours from a 70 mph tropical storm to a powerful 145mph Category 4 hurricane. 

That’s more than double the definition for rapid intensification, which is 35mph in 24 hours.

On the current forecast track, Hilary is expected to begin weakening tomorrow as it encounters cooler water temperatures, and is forecast to be a tropical storm by Sunday as it approaches the U.S.

35d ago / 12:15 PM UTC

Hilary remains a 'large and powerful' hurricane

Hurricane Hilary remained a "large and powerful" Category 4 hurricane as of early Friday morning, the National Hurricane Center said in its latest update.

Hilary was about 100 miles south of Socorro Island in Mexico and about 400 miles south of Cabo San Lucas, a resort city on the southern tip of Mexico’s Baja California peninsula, the hurricane center said in its 5 a.m. PT (8 a.m. ET) advisory.

The hurricane had maximum sustained winds of 145 mph as it barreled toward the Southwest United States.

35d ago / 11:07 AM UTC

Joshua Tree National Park to close areas vulnerable to flooding

Joshua Tree National Park managers will shut down park areas that are vulnerable to extreme flooding in anticipation of Hilary later today.

The closures are expected to go into effect this evening, park officials said.

"Joshua Tree National Park and surrounding communities could experience heavy rainfall and potential heavy flooding," a statement said. The public was advised against driving down Geology Tour Road.

Park officials warned members of the public to "reconsider outdoor activities for this weekend, be prepared to turn around if you experience moving water on roadways and be alert for lightning."

35d ago / 10:52 AM UTC

Flash flood threat growing, weather service in San Diego says

35d ago / 10:01 AM UTC

Rainfall totals of 3 to 6 inches forecast across parts of U.S.

Rainfall totals of 3 to 6 inches and isolated amounts of up to 10 inches are forecast for parts of southern California and southern Nevada this weekend and into early next week, the National Weather Service said.

The heavy rains expected "would lead to significant impacts," the weather service said in a tweet.

35d ago / 9:37 AM UTC

Heavy rainfall, flash flooding possible across parts of Southwest

"Monsoonal moisture" along with tropical moisture connected with Hurricane Hilary are expected to increase thunderstorm coverage across parts of the Southwest today, with the possibility of heavy rainfall and flash flooding, forecasters said.

As Hilary continues to move north in the eastern Pacific near Baja California, the threat of heavy rainfall and flash flooding was likely to increase on Saturday, especially for parts of Southern California, western Arizona, and southern Nevada, the National Weather Service said in an early Friday update.

With an increase in cloud cover, "temperatures will return to more seasonal values today before dropping below normal across much of Southern California, western Arizona, and the Great Basin over the weekend," the weather service said.

35d ago / 8:37 AM UTC

Will Hilary make history?


If Hurricane Hilary makes landfall on California as a tropical storm, it will be the first one in 84 years.

In a summer that has already produced extreme and anomalous weather, Hurricane Hilary will add to the list. It’s unusual in the first place that the first tropical system to threaten the U.S. is on the West Coast, rather than along the East Coast or the Gulf of Mexico.

The only time a tropical storm has made landfall in California the last 100 years was in Long Beach in 1939, according to the National Weather Service.

A storm has never been recorded to make landfall in California as a hurricane.

35d ago / 8:23 AM UTC

Follow the storm's path


Hurricane Hilary, which formed early Thursday, is heading up the eastern Pacific Ocean.

As of Thursday evening, the storm’s path was forecast to bring it across the Baja California peninsula into the southwestern U.S. over the weekend and into Monday.

As the storm barrels toward the southwest, follow our live tracker here:

35d ago / 8:23 AM UTC

Hurricane Hilary strengthens into Category 4 storm

Hurricane Hilary strengthened into a Category 4 storm as it barreled toward California, threatening to bring strong winds and heavy rains to the Southwestern U.S.

The system had reached maximum sustained winds of 140 miles per hour as of early Friday, according to the National Hurricane Center.

The system is expected to eventually weaken, but the National Weather Service warned that the storm was expected to bring “significant impacts” to the Southwestern states this weekend into early next week.