Windy, Chilly, but Bright Weekend Ahead

December 3, 2010

Lots of low clouds and foggy spots this morning in the lowest elevation west of the Cascades, BUT, otherwise totally sunny in the hills and the mountains.  You can see that in the pic above.  Combine that with increasing offshore flow, and this bodes well for a fantastic afternoon in the Metro area.  We have bright, blue, December skies ahead!

I’ve been a bit negligent posting the past couple of days.  New computer system means plenty of training, staring at shapes, and not much attention to the weather.  And today I’ll be doing the last 11am show (it ends today) along with the 4pm, due to a weekend commitment in Seaside.  But I finally sat down early this morning and perused all the models, maps, and obs.

The screaming message is:  our first cold east wind of the season arrives this weekend. 

High pressure is settling in east fo the Cascades and will be firmly entrenched tomorrow morning through sometime early next week (at least Tuesday).  With mainly snow-covered ground over there, it’s going to be a chilly east wind pouring through the Gorge and into the North Willamette Valley.  With the wind just starting this afternoon, it won’t be too cool, but you’ll really notice it tomorrow and Sunday.  A good 8-10 millibars easterly gradient should give us gusts in the 50-65 mph range by daybreak tomorrow.  A good Saturday to head to Vista House, but hold on.  WRF-GFS shows 40+ knots wind over the metro area around the 2,000′ elevation later tonight and tomorrow, so gusts to 30 mph anywhere here in town is possible.

High temps near freezing in the Eastern Gorge mean only 40-45 here in the Metro area tomorrow through Monday as well.  That gives you windchill temps in th 20s out in the eastern suburbs most of the weekend.  December is here.

The 2nd part of the weekend forecast is moisture streaming north from a low offshore of California.   Our RPM model shows the flurries staying over and east of the Cascades.  That seems most likely with just a chance of a sprinkle westside.  Definitely plenty of clouds streaming overhead tomorrow and Sunday though.  Obviously anything that falls in the Gorge will be either snow or freezing rain, probably snow east Bonneville Dam due to the deep cold air there.

We are still on for a long wet spell beginning Tuesday, so enjoy the sunshine we do get over the weekend!

Chief Meteorologist Mark Nelsen