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Easter weekend storms bring joy to the mountains, drama to the coasts

Rain falls at Heisler Park, Laguna Beach.
Rain falls at Heisler Park, Laguna Beach on Saturday. (Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)

Spring break snow bunnies reveled in a rare flurry of Easter weekend powder, posting ecstatic reports from Southern California ski resorts while would be egg-hunters sat home amid unusually wet weather in Los Angeles.

Resorts in Mammoth and Big Bear each saw multiple feet of new snow this weekend, while soaking rains and sporadic thunderstorms brought flooding to swaths of the southern coast, with more precipitation expected across the state for the first weekend of April.

"It’s quite rare," said meteorologist Ariel Cohen of the National Weather Service.

An aerial view of tarps next to cliffside houses.
Protective tarps in place Saturday attempt to thwart continued land movement below three homes in Dana Point after a landslide in early February. (Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)

Parts of Santa Barbara, Ventura and Los Angeles counties saw serious flooding over the weekend, with more than 6 inches of rain in and around Montecito, and up to 4 inches in parts of South L.A., the beach cities and Long Beach, Cohen said.

A section of Malibu Canyon Road was closed following a rockslide Friday evening, and was not expected to reopen before Monday, according to the Los Angeles County Department of Public Works.

The wet conditions also muddied plans for thousands of Easter holiday-makers, canceling or pushing off popular egg hunts in Pasadena, Santa Anita Park and Garden Grove.

While most saw blue skies on Sunday, postponed events could be rained out again next weekend, meteorologists warn.

"Next weekend looks to be unsettled," Cohen said. "We can't rule out some showers."

Similar back-to-back storms are expected up and down the state.

"It's a lot of weekend weather," said Tony Fuentes, a National Weather Service meteorologist in Reno.

Wet snow coated the Tahoe area this weekend, while showers and thunderstorms pelted parts of the San Francisco Bay Area, bringing up to 2 inches of rain to some regions, officials said. More "unstable" weather predicted again starting Thursday.

"It’s probably the most typical time of year for us to have these type of showers, but this was certainly above normal," said National Weather Service meteorologist Dylan Flynn.

He predicted wet weather could spoil another spring weekend.

"It’s just bad luck, basically," he said.  

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This story originally appeared in Los Angeles Times.