Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Californians bring out gloves, hats for cold spell

SAN DIEGO — The bright sun and clear skies were routine, but the cold was not, as Californians bundled up with sweaters and gloves and stocked up on firewood Friday to brace for several nights of freezing temperatures.

Zookeepers turned up the heat for chimpanzees in San Diego, and tourists covered their hands on Hollywood walking tours. Still, the cold snap wasn't enough to throw many off their stride.

"We love our 75-degree weather," said Tami Walker, 50, of Ventura. "Any time it gets cooler than that, everyone says, 'Oh, it's getting cooler.' If it starts to drizzle, people call each other and say, 'Run to the window.' "

Walker, part-owner of Urban Adventure Quest, which offers self-guided walking tours in California's tourist meccas, said customers wore gloves and told her they had expected a warmer vacation.

The National Weather Service is forecasting morning frost on San Diego's beaches for several days. Big Sur, on the central coast, prepared for daytime highs almost 20 degrees below Boston's. Even the snowbird haven of Palm Springs faced the possibility of freezing temperatures at night.

In Sonoma County, homeless shelters started handing out extra warm clothes to protect people from freezing overnight temperatures.

Some customers drove more than an hour to buy firewood.

"It's crazy busy here, at least 50 percent more," said Renea Teasdale, office manager at the Woodshed in Orange, south of Los Angeles.

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