Monsoon season's start a sign of things to come - FOX5 Vegas - KVVU

Monsoon season's start a sign of things to come

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LAS VEGAS (FOX5) -

When it comes to the monsoon season in Southern Nevada, one thing is for certain: it's unpredictable.

"We'll see what happens," said Todd Lericos, meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Las Vegas.

This year's season seems to be off to a fast start, but the rainfall shouldn't be that surprising. The Carpenter 1 fire last season on Mount Charleston was the result of a lightning strike during a monsoonal storm that blew in on July 1.

"The monsoon usually kicks in the first week of July. We don't always have a period of weather like we've had this July so far," Lericos said.

The rain that has been falling on and off since Friday night in Las Vegas is the result of a upper-level low pressure system that has been anchored off California.

"That's been increasing the thunderstorm activity in the area," Lericos said.

As for the impact El Nino will have on the summer, Lericos said it is uncertain. 

"There is evidence that El Nino years kind of suppress some of the monsoon activity, but here we are in an El Nino year, and we are in a pretty active cycle," he said.

The season lasts into September.

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