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Beach weather to turn to blustery skies

December 13, 2010 |  8:21 am

While the rest of the nation battles blizzards and record rains, Southern California is basking in its third day of warm temperatures more suited to sandals and shorts than skis and parkas.

Highs Monday will push past the 80-degree mark in most areas, echoing a warmer-than-normal weekend that had people flipping on their air conditioners while trimming their Christmas trees.

But forecasters say Santa and his reindeer probably will not be showing up in a Hawaiian shirt and flip-flops.

Temperatures are expected to drop at least 10 degrees starting Tuesday, and skies will cloud up, said Bonnie Bartling, a weather specialist with the National Weather Service in Oxnard.

The cooling trend will continue through the week with a slight chance of rain arriving late Thursday. Lows will be in the low 50s.

The rain threat will continue through the weekend, but it is too early to say how much will fall on Southern California, Bartling said.

Still, long-range forecasts show another high-pressure ridge could "pop in" and disrupt any rain out of the Pacific Northwest, she said.

“It’s the December roller coaster,'' Bartling said.

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-- Catherine Saillant

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