West Coast Spring Storm
May 02, 2003
This off-nadir, true-color SeaWiFS image was taken earlier this week over the western U.S. The large cyclonic storm, just off the coast of northern California, is bearing down on the Pacific Norhtwest. As a result of precipitation from this storm and a series of others in recent weeks, this was the snowiest April on record in many locations along the Sierra Nevada ranges. The Sierra's (center) are mostly cloud-covered on this image. Not surprisingly, the desert areas of the southwestern U.S. and northwestern Mexico have few clouds. The skies over much of central California, including the San Francisco Bay area, are also clear. Note the Salton Sea (large inland lake), Imperial Valley and the Gulf Of California at the lower right of the image. The azure blue strip hugging the Earth's limb is an artistic touch.