A quick winter storm dropped rain and even hail on parts of the valley Thursday. People in the high desert woke up to a cloudy, wet and extremely cold morning. So cold, it froze pipes in some areas. "It was real cold you know, it started raining first," said Ted Barajas, who lives in Joshua Tree. "After a while, it started snowing, you know, like big rocks."
Many of our viewers sent pictures of yards and driveways covered in white, but no Winter Wonderland here, just some pea-sized hail. That didn't stop people from bundling up the kids and taking full advantage of a change from the usual desert weather. "It was strange, it's unusual," said Larry Hughes, a Yucca Valley resident. "Like I said, we get so little rain up here, every little bit we get, we appreciate."
The dark skies gave people a different view on their morning commute, but also made things a little dangerous. The slick roads and rain drew concern from some drivers. "With no lights on, but their windshield wipers going and a number of commercial vehicles and 18-wheelers that didn't have their lights on," said Hughes. "I think they passed that law for a reason, because it's a hazard."
On the valley floor, no signs of hail, just an abrupt rain storm that took some people by surprise. "Bam, about ten minutes of pure pouring rain because we need rain," said Linda Nosser, who lives in Desert Hot Springs.
According to the National Weather Service, less than one hundredth of an inch fell at both the Thermal and Palm Springs airports.