Larch Mountain Snow Gate Still Closed

Here’s yet another effect of the historically cold and wet Spring 2011.  The highest paved road in Multnomah County will remained closed through much of June, which is quite unusual.  This is from Multnomah County, via the Corbett, Oregon website:

The upper section of Larch Mountain Road beyond milepost 10 in rural east county remains closed due to heavy snowfalls this winter and spring. Larch Mountain Road is the highest road in Multnomah County’s jurisdiction, reaching an altitude of 4055 feet.  

Each winter, the county closes public access to recreation areas off upper Larch Mountain Road by installing a snow gate at milepost 10.  Opening the upper section of the road for recreational users happens when snow levels decline. The upper section of Larch Mountain Road is expected to reopen in late June.  Multnomah County will send out an announcement when the road reopens.

This affects tourists, hikers, bicyclists, and star-gazers; it’s the closest high-elevation location with easy access from Portland.

In other news, I see Sparky the Firedog will be visiting the Fire Station #14 during their Pancake Breakfast this Saturday.  Looks windy, sunny, and warm! 

Chief Meteorologist Mark Nelsen

51 Responses to Larch Mountain Snow Gate Still Closed

  1. Jim says:

    I drove up there today. So annoyed the snow gate was still closed. grrrr

  2. jbpdx says:

    Here it comes:

    Snow melting, dams filling, floods feared in West

    GRAND COULEE DAM, Wash. – The giant concrete dams of the Pacific Northwest are overflowing with water. Wyoming has deployed National Guard troops to pile up sandbags. A federal official compares the impending situation to a bucking bull ready to storm out of his chute.
    States across the West are bracing for major flooding in the coming weeks once a record mountain snowpack starts melting and sending water gushing into rivers, streams and low-lying communities. The catalyst will be warmer temperatures forecast for the next week that could set off a rapid thaw.
    Randy Julander, a supervisor with the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Natural Resources Conservation Service, says flooding this year could be worse than anyone has ever seen. Julander said in a typical year the weather warms gradually, allowing snow in the mountains to melt slowly and ease into rivers and streams over time. That’s not the case this year after a cool, rainy spring.
    “It’s all just sitting there, sitting there, sitting there. Everyone knows it’s going to come down, it’s just when and how quick that we’re all waiting for,” he said. “The bull is basically sitting in the chute and the gates are already open. He’s just not coming out to play yet, but when he does I anticipate he’s really going to be ticked off and bucking hard.”
    The National Weather Service predicts this will be one of the top five water years in history in the Pacific Northwest, and the biggest since 1997, the last year of significant flooding, said Gina Baltrush said of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.
    Jon Lea, a hydrologist with the U.S. Natural Resources Conservation Service in Portland, said snowpack in the Western states is a combined 220 percent of average for this time of year.

  3. bgb41 says:

    6/1/2011 Oregon (All) Temperature Summary

    Warmest:
    High:72 at UMATILLA( 270 ft)
    Low: 54 at DW6470 Ontario(2150 ft)

    Coldest:
    High:30 at CRATER LAKE RIM(7050 ft)
    Low: 26 at CRATER LAKE RIM (7050 ft ) & SUMMER RIM (7100 ft ) & CRANE PRAIRIE (5500 ft )

    Largest Diurnal Change: 28 degrees
    DW6879 Union (71/43 ) (2792 ft )

    Heaviest Rainfall:
    0.94″ at KD6WAB Salem(200ft)
    0.91″ at EDEN(4200ft)

  4. Timmy_Supercell (Klamath Falls @ 4200') says:

    Let Juneuary begin!

  5. Timmy_Supercell (Klamath Falls @ 4200') says:

    Last several GFS runs display another upper level disturbance sticking around the area… However in terms of moisture content, it does not appear to be feeding too much of it.

    The convection we saw last few days may have been the brunt of it for now. A small chance of thunderstorms come Sunday for sections south of the Willamette Valley, but I wouldn’t bet on anything yet. Long term forecasting almost never works out in scenarios such as this.

    • Timmy_Supercell (Klamath Falls @ 4200') says:

      The upper level low on June 4th 2009 is virtually in the same exact position as this…

      Interesting correlation here, but many factors will greatly downplay the development of convection. That would be lack of warm temperatures, dew points, and ultimately the lack of abundant atmospheric energy/lift.

  6. Boydo3 N. Albany 500' says:

    Keep in mind, this is the first of JUNE!
    http://www.callatg.com/~nsps/weather.htm

  7. geo says:

    .com/popups/Cam.asp?camera=1354&curRegion=

  8. geo says:

    am.asp?camera=1354&curRegion=4

  9. Dennis Bryson says:

    Thanks for the nice word on the Fire
    Department Breakfast. Come out enjoy the weather and have a GREAT BREAKFAST!

  10. Austin (Cornelius) says:

    Umm….where is the link for cell alerts? I want it…please!

  11. Steviewonder says:

    The bears are even confused on what season it it. Summer? Where?

  12. bgb41 says:

    September 1996: Epic 28 mile bike ride from Multnomah Falls lodge. Rode up from the Multnomah creek basin trail up to larch mtn parking lot. Took about 4 hours. Then rode down Larch mtn road which was about 25 minutes of not pedaling at all. Just coasting downhill the whole time. High was 85 that day. Man was I hurtin’ the next morning.

    • Man, Brian, that trail is a pain on foot (we did the Larch Crater Loop last fall). I’m too wore out to even consider doing it on a bike – and UPhill? No thanks.

  13. Cgavic sandy Oregon 1,100 ft says:

    Looking at the weather channel forecast…so much for our weekend. The only day of sun and no rain is Saturday.

    But it’s better than tornadoes

  14. Rob "Wrath" S.E. Portland says:

    Looks like a t-storm west of Molalla moving east likely along an existing boundary.

  15. Hal in Aims says:

    Will probably see you Saturday…….will you be flipping or sweating?

  16. Ben Randall says:

    SHORT TERM FORECAST
    NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE PORTLAND OR
    430 PM PDT WED JUN 1 2011

    ORZ007-008-010-020030-
    SOUTH WILLAMETTE VALLEY-CENTRAL WILLAMETTE VALLEY-
    NORTHERN OREGON CASCADE FOOTHILLS-
    430 PM PDT WED JUN 1 2011

    .NOW…
    AT 430 PM PDT NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE DOPPLER RADAR INDICATED A
    THUNDERSTORM 11 MILES NORTHWEST OF SUBLIMITY…OR ABOUT 6 MILES
    NORTHEAST OF SALEM…MOVING SOUTHEAST AT 20 MPH. LOCATIONS IMPACTED
    BY THIS THUNDERSTORM THROUGH 530 PM PDT INCLUDE SILVER FALLS. SMALL
    HAIL AND HEAVY RAIN CAN BE EXPECTED IN THESE AREAS.
    $$

    WEATHER.GOV/PORTLAND

  17. Steviewonder says:

    It feels ripe for a thunderstorm where I am at but I just know it won’t happen. And by feel, I mean the way the clouds look and how it actually feels outside on my skin.

  18. Rob "Wrath" S.E. Portland says:

    New cell has rapidly developed north of Saint Helens tracking south-southeast.

    • Rob "Wrath" S.E. Portland says:

      And the next radar scan…. Guess?

      Weakened. Crummy PNW pulse nature convection pftttt.

  19. Cgavic sandy Oregon 1,100 ft says:

    I still will not complain about. Or weather…
    Massechusettes is getting a tornado as we speak.

    The minute the cold air is leaving our area, it’s instantly turning into hot, humid, tornadoes.

    I ran into someone coming from the Midwest…we’ve got the better weather.

    • Rob "Wrath" S.E. Portland says:

      Yeah the Springfield, MA area was hit hard as well as surrounding communities.

  20. ThunderCloud - North Plains says:

    Well looks like all of this storm went just south of us…. Chances of us getting a thunderstorm tonight? Looking pretty low… 😦

  21. Heisson Rob says:

    Do we know sparky the firedog, perchance?

  22. W7ENK says:

    Hohhhh!!! The sky toward Milwaukie looks downright dangerous! I wish I could upload a picture for ya, but the tinypic domain is blocked at work…

  23. W7ENK says:

    Run it down!!!

  24. ThunderCloud - North Plains says:

    1st!

  25. Yeah tried to go up there and met the gate – glad to see some official word about when its supposed to reopen – thanks.

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