Midday Sunday Quickie

Okay, maybe ONE more time it's going to snow in Portland…that would be this evening. 

The setup is back once again.  We've been expecting a good dose of moisture to move in around sunset at the latest here in the western valleys.  And we've been expected the south wind to pick up about the same time (or soon after).  When I left work Friday, it appeared that snow might briefly stick as low as 1,000' this evening, especially up in Clark/Cowlitz counties and below that elevation in the Gorge. 

But one thing has changed in the last 24 hours…colder and drier air has been blowing into the region out of the Columbia River Gorge.  More than anticipated.  A good chunk of the Columbia Basin to our east is snow-covered and they just had a clear/cold night to add to that as we did.  So right now the airmass coming into the eastern part of the Metro area is cold enough to produce snow or freezing rain.  Those areas a few degrees above freezing will cool TO freezing as soon as the precipitation starts.  Since the warming southerly wind has to overcome the evaporative cooling from that airmass, I think several inches of snow (2-3") are likely across most of the metro area, with 4"+ possible up in northern Clark county and the west end of the Gorge.  This will happen between the start of precip. and 10pm.

For those of you hoping to get out of work or school tomorrow? That's unlikely since the temp warms dramatically during the night.  The bulk of the lowlands should be up to at least 45 by sunrise with a gusty southerly wind blowing.

Now, I can't watch weather the rest of the afternoon, I have flooring to nail down.  Life must go on…Mark Nelsen

526 Responses to Midday Sunday Quickie

  1. cloud cap says:

    Hwy 35 on the east side of Hood is closed 5 miles south of Hwy 26 to all trucks due to strong winds. Also Hwy 26 just south of 216 jct is closed because of many trees across all lanes of traffic. Here in White Salmon we only have patches of snow with winds 07 to 25 my strongest gust was earlier this morning at38 mph

  2. Annie in Vancouver says:

    So our dousing should begin this evening?
    Agree Wrath – is quite breezy and blustery here! Had been all day!
    It DOES feel nice to have it warm again. While it was cold the wind would just cut right through me! THAT was cold. But now it’s over 50 degrees and feels almost like fall instead of winter. I do hope we will have another big snow event!!

  3. Runrain says:

    Just flew into PDX. On of the wildest landings I can remember! Stiff crosswinds had the 737 all over the place!

  4. Runrain says:

    Just flew into PDX. On of the wildest landings I can remember! Stiff crosswinds had the 737 all over the place!

  5. Tetraforce says:

    In response to Andrew:
    Tetra…I loved the 1998 blast. If something like that happened I’d be satisfied. Even if there was no snow.
    Posted by: Andrew Johnson (Silverton) | Tuesday, January 06, 2009 at 02:39 PM
    You said it! I’ve always been curious to what could’ve happened if we had more snow. 2″ or so. Single digets?
    I bet a lot of people has broken pipes in 98.
    Also in response to the person from Longview Washington: We also had no more then 6″ (on top of ice)

  6. Jet Stream Jethro / Canby says:

    Yee-Haw! Did someone say Pineapple Express?!?!? šŸ™‚ Hopefully we can make it through this one without any damaging floods or landslides…
    Enjoy the balmy weather while it lasts, because we’re going to get socked in with fog / inversion this weekend (at least south of the metro area).

  7. Andrew Johnson (Silverton) says:

    Tetra…I loved the 1998 blast. If something like that happened I’d be satisfied. Even if there was no snow.

  8. Tetraforce says:

    Good. I thought we were going to have a split jet-stream keeping us high and dry like an Elnino with lots of fog/inversion. Yuck!

  9. Christiana--Forest Grove says:

    KPTV Forecast
    * Flood Watch Tomorrow and Thursday *
    A “pineapple express” has set up over the Pacific Northwest this afternoon. That’s a conveyor belt of warm, humid air from teh tropics that curves northward over the Pacific Ocean, then into our region. It appears that the bulk of the rain the next 24 hours will be just to our north, in Western Washington. Plenty of rain falls Wednesday along the North Oregon Coast and S.W. Washington, but expect lighter rain down here in Portland. Tomorrow evening through Thursday morning though the rain will slip south over us, giving us a good soaking. We could see up to 2″ here in the metro area during that time. Snow levels remain very high in the Cascades through Thursday morning…above the treeline! So skip skiing until Thursday afternoon and Friday, but at least the traveling will be easy through the Passes.

  10. Brian in Bellingham says:

    I am wondering what would be so unusual about having two cold episdoes in the same winter? Is that more unusual for Oregon?
    To say that we will see another cold run like the one we just had is asking for a lot, and yes climatologically unlikely, but to say that two cold episodes in the same winter is not likely I think ignores history.

  11. Tetraforce says:

    Thanks for the short answer. Looks like I won’t be missing anything here cept fog you can’t see thru. LO.
    In response to Andrew from Silverton:
    Salem picked up 33 or 34 inches of snow in the winter of 92-93…Significant snows fell in Dec., Jan., and Feb. 19th,1993 11.9″ was recorded at SLE. So this winter has been nice, but I want more! If we don’t get anything else this winter I will rank it near, but slightly above 03-04. An epic 2 week stretch, but not winter.
    Posted by: Andrew Johnson (Silverton) | Tuesday, January 06, 2009 at 12:29 PM
    I agree 100 percent. The 1998 blast was even better if you like extreme temps. We had highs below freezing for days and lows stuck in the teens.
    No snowfall whatsoever though.

  12. Andrew Johnson (Silverton) says:

    Thats what I keep reminding myself…Nothing could be as hideous as Jan. 2006.

  13. Andrew Johnson (Silverton) says:

    Honestly I think that we are overdue for some exciting Feb. weather. We haven’t had a good snowfall in Feb since 1995. We did have the good cold blast in 2006 after the blowtorch January.

  14. Al Gore says:

    Hey, you betcha!… No sweat…
    “What are the chances that a, let’s say 1-in-10 yr pattern (that resulted in a 1-in-40 yr snow storm), will repeat itself within a 2 month time frame?”
    Very good! When your hot, your hot, when you’re not, you’re not… Objects in motion tend to stay in motion sort of thing…
    Sunspots / mountaintops blowing / EPO’s / PDO’s and shoot even a good IPO will do the trick šŸ™‚ Now that’s science! (Ask Larry)

  15. Atmospheric Wrath aka Gradient Keeper - Elevation 300' -Far S.E. Portland- says:

    Hey all. Haven’t been able to post….
    Sure is breezy/gusty out there.. Looks to continue and possibly increase. With a warm front to our north draped across Washington we will see an extended period of south winds. Looks like a 984-988mb low develops the moves inland well to our north near northern Vancouver Island or so and with much stronger high pressure 1029-1033mb to our south/southwest the pressure difference should pick up nicely. Definitely have the warm air mixing to help out this time around.
    Latest 4km cross section model suggests S-SW winds breezy/gusty for well over 24 hours.

    Not only that but a healthy 40kts+ is just off the surface, so we need to watch things closely.

  16. Atmospheric Wrath aka Gradient Keeper - Elevation 300' -Far S.E. Portland- says:

    Hey all. Haven’t been able to post….
    Sure is breezy/gusty out there.. Looks to continue and possibly increase. With a warm front to our north draped across Washington we will see an extended period of south winds. Looks like a 984-988mb low develops the moves inland well to our north near northern Vancouver Island or so and with much stronger high pressure 1029-1033mb to our south/southwest the pressure difference should pick up nicely. Definitely have the warm air mixing to help out this time around.
    Latest 4km cross section model suggests S-SW winds breezy/gusty for well over 24 hours.

    Not only that but a healthy 40kts+ is just off the surface, so we need to watch things closely.

  17. Sandman - Aloha says:

    So….if the pattern according to LRC Weather does repeat, that would put us into the end of Jan for the next surge. The GFS picked up on the longwave regression (did I say that right?) what 15 or so days out. As my instincts suggested we should see hints on the GFS in about a week if Feb will be a repeat of Mid Dec.
    “Sandman slowly backs away from the computer and gets to work.”

  18. Silverton 500 says:

    Sorry – Your scientific insights are of THEIR usual value. šŸ˜‰

  19. Silverton 500 says:

    Sorry – Your scientific insights are of THEIR usual value. šŸ˜‰

  20. Silverton 500 says:

    Thanks Sandman – that’s what I was TRYING to say šŸ˜‰

  21. Sandman - Aloha says:

    Don’t forget we are in a favorable climatic condidition. Look to the analogs, not to raw statistics, and folks our recent experience (the last 20 years) may be a statistical anomoly also. Keep in mind we have just been through a very warm period through the 20 years or so and are now entering a more colder period the last couple of years.
    Look a winters where we have had cut off lows. The pattern has repeated over and over. Look at winters where we have and omega over the gulf. It in turn can repeat. (The last outbreak does resemble the one we had over Christmas in the Early 80’s) I am wondering if this last Dec. H out in the pacific has an analog? That would be telling. šŸ™‚

  22. Sandman - Aloha says:

    Don’t forget we are in a favorable climatic condidition. Look to the analogs, not to raw statistics, and folks our recent experience (the last 20 years) may be a statistical anomoly also. Keep in mind we have just been through a very warm period through the 20 years or so and are now entering a more colder period the last couple of years.
    Look a winters where we have had cut off lows. The pattern has repeated over and over. Look at winters where we have and omega over the gulf. It in turn can repeat. (The last outbreak does resemble the one we had over Christmas in the Early 80’s) I am wondering if this last Dec. H out in the pacific has an analog? That would be telling. šŸ™‚

  23. Silverton 500 says:

    Andrews observation about 93 reinforces my point. That was a cold winter with what, 3 significant events in one year?

  24. Silverton 500 says:

    Andrews observation about 93 reinforces my point. That was a cold winter with what, 3 significant events in one year?

  25. Silverton 500 says:

    Andrews observation about 93 reinforces my point. That was a cold winter with what, 3 significant events in one year?

  26. Andrew Johnson (Silverton) says:

    Salem picked up 33 or 34 inches of snow in the winter of 92-93…Significant snows fell in Dec., Jan., and Feb. 19th,1993 11.9″ was recorded at SLE. So this winter has been nice, but I want more! If we don’t get anything else this winter I will rank it near, but slightly above 03-04. An epic 2 week stretch, but not winter.

  27. Andrew Johnson (Silverton) says:

    I will say that the december pattern for me in terms of snow and temps was much like the first two weeks of Jan. 1993 here.

  28. Andrew Johnson (Silverton) says:

    I will say that the december pattern for me in terms of snow and temps was much like the first two weeks of Jan. 1993 here.

  29. Silverton 500 says:

    John and Mike have good points. It’s not just a 1-in-100 chance. Just like one a 100-year flood plain, it could happen two years in a row. And it may even be more likely that this would happen in cases like La Nina or other favorable setups. So, for example, if you have a La Nina situation, a 1-in-100 flood may have a 1-in-50 chance of happening since conditions are favorable. So I’m not saying it WILL happen, but I think it’s more likely than in a “normal” year. This winter already has not been normal, so why would it start now?
    Maybe wish-casting also, but there may be some truth in there.

  30. Al Gore says:

    JohnD,
    Are you to imply weather in “Modern times” is any different than what “history” shows us?…

  31. Al Gore says:

    JohnD,
    Are you to imply weather in “Modern times” is any different than what “history” shows us?…

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