Hail storms pound the Bay Area – kids ‘sled’ down hills in Oakland


An unstable atmosphere and chilly temperatures triggered isolated hail storms, lighting and thunder around the Bay Area Monday morning.

The hail came down hard at about 7 a.m. in the East Bay and bits of ice were plentiful and collected on the ground, making it look as if it had snowed.

Many posted images on Twitter of the hail dusting the ground and cars in Oakland and Alameda.

One person shared an image of kids “sledding” down a hail-covered hill in Oakland; another person in Berkeley tweeted at 8:30 a.m., “Mung-bean-sized hail in Berkeley flats right now.”

By 8:30 a.m. acres and acres of the Oakland Hills were covered in hail, creating a wintry scene.

A barrage of hail pounded Highway 13, the short loop through Alameda, causing traffic jams and accidents. Caltrans reportedly plans to drop sand on the road to prevent slipping.

At 8:15 a.m., a live webcam on the Richmond-San Rafael bridge showed a hail storm.

The National Weather Service issued a weather advisory at 9 a.m. for Southeast Santa Cruz County for heavy showers with possible hail until 9:30 a.m.

At 9 a.m. there were reports of thunder and lighting in the East Bay.

As a cold front moves across Northern California, scattered showers and thunderstorms, small hail, snow on mountain peaks, and gusty winds are all in the forecast for Monday morning and afternoon. The weather is forecast to calm in the evening.

Send your hail reports, photos and videos to agraff@sfchronicle.com