Welcome to ‘Primavera Falsa’ – the Annual False Spring

by on January 27, 2020 · 1 comment

in Ocean Beach

big surf day 11-3-10 jg 03-sm

A big surf day in OB. Photo by Jim Grant (11-3-10)

It’s “Primavera Falsa” time – the False Spring that comes to Ocean Beach and Southern California every year in mid to late January. And it’s happening again. Check out the temperatures coming up this week – the low 70’s to the low 80’s.

Every year around this time SoCal enjoys a week or two of “unseasonably” warm weather. Surfers grab their boards and head for the waves in droves. People flock to the beaches in swimsuits and actually go into the ocean.

Winter sweaters and jackets are stashed – at least temporarily -, and the BBQ grills are rolled back out from their winter hibernation. Yet, alas … it’s only for a short while. For a decade now, we’ve been calling it Primavera Falsa and it happens every January.

There are different theories why it happens, but I’m not certain why it happens.  I remember the late January warm air when I was a teenager in Junior High. A bunch of us would go down to the beaches along Sunset Cliffs, make fires, create rafts out of driftwood, wear swimsuits.

Because it does happen every year, it’s NOT “unseasonable” as often the local media describe it – those with no institutional memory. If something akin to this occurs with regularity, it’s regular, it’s seasonal.

It is a false spring, as flowers bloom and trees think it’s Spring time! Insects and birds are a-buzzing once again. Then it’s over and it’s back to the cold and the chill. Back to coats and layers and chilly days.

So, remember when out-of-town friends or tourists exclaim to you, “wow, this is unseasonable weather we’re having, isn’t it!?” – you can stare them straight in the face and say, ‘no, this happens every January, and it’s called the Primavera Falsa!”

So, enjoy it while you can.

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Avatar Akwhitty January 27, 2020 at 8:13 pm

Its – 14 yesterday here in Alaska.
That picture looks glorious.
Down in O.B. the 9th . Hope the weather cooperates.

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