The Baldwin Hills follows the meteorological patterns of the larger Southern Californian climate. The weather of the region is created by the presence of the large offshore high pressure cell that tends to guard the region from most storm systems that approach the region. In the winter months, this high pressure cell descends down into Latin America, thus allowing storms to enter the Southern Californian region. Due to the power of this offshore cell, Southern California (and the Baldwin Hills) tends to enjoy hot and dry summers, with a shift to more moist and cool climate in the winter months.
Baldwin Hills Climate
The Baldwin Hills natural area is located 4 miles inland from the Pacific ocean, and falls inside of the ‘maritime fringe climatic region’ of Southern California. This fringe climate typically witnesses a mild climate that tends to maintain a temperature between 50-70 degrees Fahrenheit. Average temperatures for the Baldwin Hills natural area fall between 65.1 and 76.8 (min and max). Rainfall in this region averages 10-20 inches per year, with the Baldwin Hills natural area seeing a median annual rainfall of 11 inches. It is important to note that California tends to live in a cycle of storms and drought, so rainfall can vary tremendously based on each year. The highest levels of rainfall occur in between the months of November and April. Prevailing winds hit the site from the southwest or west around 7 mph. Given the proximity to the coast, the Baldwin Hills natural area is partly cloudy, or cloudy 179 out of the 365 days each year. Extreme instances of fog, causing low visibility, occur around 20-30 days each year, with that number having decreased over time with the improving overall air quality of the Los Angeles Basin and increasing sea surface temperatures.
Since the Baldwin Hills area is located within 4 miles of the ocean, the air quality tends to substantially better than its inland counterparts. The changing of offshore and onshore winds clear local sources of pollution. Typically the ocean winds forcibly migrate local pollutants inland and/or down the Pacific coast. The wind patterns associated with the Baldwin hills allow the area to enjoy the status of a source zone of pollutants, rather than a reception zone.
For more information:
- Meteorology Baldwin Hills Project – Harold Raynard (1978)
- Source and Dispersion of Odors in the Baldwin Hills and Its Effect on the Surrounding Communities (2009)
- Baldwin Hills Air Quality Study: Final Results (2015) presentation and study