Forecast Working Out Well; Historic Spring Snow In Valley

10:00am: 

Very impressive preformance by numerical weather models today!

Heavy snow in the foothills, very little in the lowest elevations around the Portland Metro area, heavy snow to the valley floor central and south valley too.

Right now the main action is from Salem to Eugene with the heavy snowfall…5-8″ down there!  As the NWS says, a historic spring snowstorm in the Valley.

More accumulation down south all  day, the precip changes back to snow (briefly) here in the Metro area sometime after 8pm, but with little additional accumulation.

Here in the Metro Area, it’s doubtful we’ll see anything other than a dusting overnight.  In fact temps stay above freezing down in Salem.  I don’t think we’ll have major issues for the Thursday Morning Commute.

Roads look clear enough, so I’m on vacation now through next week for Spring Break.

Chief Meteorologist Mark Nelsen

496 Responses to Forecast Working Out Well; Historic Spring Snow In Valley

  1. philinforestgrove says:

    Oh …and as this lengthy and epic post winds down, did I mention that I was first on the comments? I will try to be last too.. 🙂

  2. JJ97222 says:

    What a great afternoon 51 degrees with sun for a couple of days coming. Off to see my daughters tennis match, from a trace of snow to tennis on the same day awsome!

  3. BEn T. says:

    The Northwest getting one more snowstorm. Over or under. I say one more.

  4. Kyle says:

    Sometime in the late 80s when I was like 3 or so Paradise California (elevation 1500 to 2,000) had 3 feet of snow in THREE hours collapsing over 300 buildings. (according to the news report at the time)

    Dad told me that he started working at Payless Drugs at the Pharmacy at that time and they all evacuated an hour before there was a partial roof collapse though I cannot remember which side the collapse happened on. 😮

    Chico California where we lived had a quarter inch of snow which is freak for them but Andy the weatherman predicted it very accurate which my parents knew it was going to snow before it happened.

    Andy is equal to Mark Nelson which Andy has his crap together when it comes to historical weather knowledge and they constantly use the jet-stream as part of the forecast.
    Not only that but they also show where the jet stream was and where it’s predicted to go making very reliable forecasts which it was rare for him to be wrong.

    In the late 80s through the 90s except in drought years there would be a lot of big Gulf of Alaska storms a year that would dump snow measured by the foot down to the lower mountain ranges like 3000ft and sometimes well down to the foothills which usually resulted in power outages if you lived up there.

  5. PaulB/Eugene says:

    Eugene is a big slush bowl now. Funny to see vultures in the area attempting to hover in the thermals that don’t exist because of snow cover, as well as the swallows.

    Quite impressive that St. John, New Brunswick, Canada broke their all time high for March…but not only that…it was 2.6C higher than their record high for APRIL! (found this out on Jeff Masters page). Odds are pretty likely that many of these places that had highs in the 80s and 90s will see some sort of reality check…like a day below freezing. Some tree damage from premature summer followed by freeze could result I guess.

  6. ASHLEY WATSON says:

    I AM GOING TO STICK UP FOR MARK. tHE FACT THAT ABOUT A MONTH AGO HE PUT A FORK IN THIS WINTER I THINK WAS THE RIGHT THING TO DO. i MEAN WHAT WERE THAT CHANCES THAT WE WOULD HAVE SO MUCH SNOW IN MARCH. THE ODDS WERE PRETTY LOW. aNYBODY COULD SEE THAT THIS WAS A FREAK SNOW EVENT, ONE IN A 50 YEAR EVENT. BY THE WAY MARK WHEN YOU HAVE SOME TIME COULD YOU EXLAIN THE DYNAMICS OF THESE PAST TWO SNOW EVENTS FOR MARCH. i MEAN IT’S HARD TO GET THIS MUCH SNOW IN JANUARY LET ALONE MARCH WITHOUT AN ARCTIC FRONT. BY THE WAY MARK FOR THE RECORD YOU ARE WRONG ABOUT 10% OF THE TIME EVERYBODY ELSE 90%.
    WITH THOSE KIND OF ODDS IF I WAS A BETTING MAN I WOULD ALWAYS GO WITH MARK

  7. Joshua in Lake Oswego says:

    The temperature is staying pretty steady. It probably won’t make it much past 40 today. The snow should stick around for a little while.

  8. Kyle says:

    If we didn’t have Daylight Stupid Time we would’ve been light by 5:30.

  9. Kyle says:

    Power cut from 4:11am till around 8. (cause unknown) Also between 12 and 1am the lights AND my computer when on and off a few times but I am not sure if that counts as a power cut or if the power has to be off for more then 1 minute.

    In fact: almost the whole hill was without electricity but daylight was not too far away 🙂 Also: the public schools including the district office are CLOSED for the day with a good 4 inches.

    If we have a freeze tonight then it’s a sure bet that a 2 hour delay to finish off the week before spring break for the kids.

    Fun times!1 🙂

    • Andrew (Near Silver Falls 1600') says:

      Probably because of the heavy wet snow Kyle. Looked like you guys had a few inches in Silverton when I drove through town this morning.

    • Kyle says:

      I was walking to see the snow a little bit ago and saw a road crew truck driving down from the hills with a stop sign on the back of the truck.

      I wonder if someone slammed into that stop sign and then hit a telephone pole? It would make sense because the lights did not flicker when they went out. They just went *poof!* and then nothing.

  10. Marc (East Vancouver) says:

    I wonder if Mark would qualify this as a widespread snow event? It sure seems like it to me.. 2+ inches here at 270 feet elevation and the largest snowfall of the year.

    • ryan says:

      Agree, but also think that widespread needs to be a full day event, not just 8pm-6am. Being at 32 or warmer the whole time, the roads never became a threat anywhere below 500 feet by this morning. So I’ll call it a partial bust…

    • Marc (East Vancouver) says:

      I agree also. However, looking at school closures and delays, It looks like roads were a concern most everywhere.

    • Andrew (Near Silver Falls 1600') says:

      It was a widespread event. More widespread than anything since December 2008.

    • Mark Nelsen says:

      From Reno…appears widespread to me. Yes Marc, I can be wrong. I have no problem admitting that.

    • dale says:

      It was praty snow coverd out her in dayton whitch is only about 160feet in eleivation

    • pappoose in scappoose says:

      No weather forecaster is always right.
      Just a job of making your best guess.

    • Kyle says:

      Except they get paid to do it. Wouldn’t you love to get paid to make a mistake in your job without being fired?

      The mistakes the NWS makes would get any person fired and maybe even yelled at by their boss but let’s treat them special just 4 you. 🙂

    • Kyle says:

      In fact if it was a company the kind of mistakes the NWS makes would likely result in a through investigation to find out what went wrong and how to make sure it did not happen again.

      Employees would be questioned for possible inside help to the cause of the problem and when possible there would be severe changes in policies.

      • Ryan says:

        Unbelievable. So what’s your solution Kyle? The NWS is using the best tools they have, they don’t have a crystal ball telling then exactly what’s gonna happen. Loosen up a little, it’s not like they say it’s gonna be 70 and it’s really 32 and snow. They can’t tell you EXACTLY every single thing that will happen. Go work for them if you want to try and prove them wrong! Predicting winter weather in the pacific NW is very very hard. Do you criticize them in the summer too when they forecast 98 an it’s actually 101???

    • pappoose in scappoose says:

      Don’t mess with me Kyle.I’ll tear you apart.

  11. SnowedIn - North Plains says:

    Woke up at about 2am and saw 2 inches or so of snow, temp 32.0F. Now at 8am, we have about an inch and the temp is 32.4F…

  12. 9-1/2″ A beautiful morning! Blue skies and sunshine!

  13. GeekyMominCamas says:

    About 2″ in Camas at 350′ elev.

  14. germantownsummit1000' says:

    5+”

    32 even

    foggy, calm and quiet

  15. Dave in South Salem (500') says:

    About 6 inches as my place, maybe 2-3 in downtown Salem.

  16. 2″ in Orchards…….33.3°

  17. Emily Waldman says:

    Have about 1-2″ here 35 degrees & melting! Lots of thumps outside with snow falling off of stuff! Only one school district not on two hour delay & that’s Longview! The roads are slushy mess but no ice unless you’re higher up! Enjoy all!

    • JJ97222 says:

      37 degrees in Milwaukie roads clear and blue sky showing through, gonna be great next couple of days!

  18. chiefWright (Marquam, 370') says:

    2.5″ snow on the ground this morning. Estimate 0.6″ SWE, but I botched the measurement. 1.15″ 24 hr precip total. Most of the snow accumulated between 7:30-midnight, then what sounded like rain in the early AM.

  19. Joshua in Lake Oswego says:

    2″ or so here and melting. 34 degrees.

  20. AdamInAumsville says:

    5 inches here. About 4 of it fell last night.

  21. 3.5″ here in BG. Temp is 33 and its melting though…

  22. 6″ yesterday morning before it changed to rain. Sometime last night it changed back to snow before moisture ran out and I got 1″ of new snow for a storm total of 7″. Currently have 4″ still on the ground. Which is just amazing for me even in winter.

  23. Jethro (Molalla ~320') says:

    Well, I’m seeing it, so I guess I gotta believe it. 3.0″ on top of my SnugTop pickup bed cover.

  24. AlohaWeather says:

    2-3″ of heavy wet snow. The snow is heavy enough, that the hazelnut trees are leaning over, and even touching the ground in some places!

  25. Andrew (Portland....Sylvan Highlands ~800 feet) says:

    About 4.5 inches here, so much for a 1,000 foot snow level overnight haha.

  26. Doppler Dave (NE Portland) says:

    After a rain/snow yesterday afternoon and evening, then all snow for about a 7-8 hour stretch, I ended up with 1.25 accumulation of snow, which I find incredibly impressive for March 22nd. If it were perhaps two degrees cooler, the totals would have been bewildering!

  27. About 1.5″ here in Beaverton, down the street from the High School, off Allen Blvd. / Erickson St., >200 ft.

  28. W7ENK says:

    4am, precip has ended, light Southerly winds now, temp up to 35.4F, everything is melting. With only 1.5″, it will be mostly gone by the time I leave for work.

    • Kyle says:

      Darn. It’s all over! 😦 It was nice while it lasted.

      If this happened in a slightly cooler world equal to the 1950s AND in the winter time this would’ve been a Jan 1969 redux easy and this time Salem-Portland would’ve been the places that got 2 feet of snow.

  29. Jesse-Orchards says:

    Wow, Mark completely blew this one. It was pretty obvious by this afternoon that the Portland area was going to get hit hard tonight as that wave was taking its time rounding the base of the trough and pivoting the front.

    I would suggest letting logic and reason dictate your forecast next time, Mark, rather than the simple fact that you never want it to snow here.

    • Mark Nelsen says:

      Classy Jesse, didn’t even check to see if I was working yesterday did you before ripping on me? This is why you are on moderation.

      • ryan says:

        Yea it wasn’t really evident until afternoon, by which time Mark was on the road. No way he could’ve provided a logical update while not working. And the fact that it started at nightfall, there was no commute issue like December 2009. I really can’t call this a bust just because of the lack of impact it had at lower elevations. And don’t tell me a slushy road and 33 degrees is dangerous to drive on.

        • Mark Nelsen says:

          Actually I was on the road at 10am and didn’t even make a forecast in the afternoon. Jesse has been banned since December or early January from this blog for negative and demeaning posts exactly like this. I let this comment through so it would be a bit more obvious why I make decisions like this.

        • ryan says:

          I know, that’s what I was saying, you weren’t able to do an afternoon forecast. I’m on your side here, Mark.

    • Ken ( S. Salem 500ft.) says:

      What an a whole. You do great work Mark. Enjoy your vacation. Hit up Silver Legacy for me.

    • W7ENK says:

      Jesse, the day you start pulling down a paycheck for soliciting your (un)educated opinion about the local weather, that’s when I’ll remove the salt from your every word.

      Until then, kindly STFU, thank you very nice. 😉

    • vernonia1 says:

      Glad to know you made it Mark….hope you have a great vacay 🙂

  30. john says:

    next disturbance offshore i can see more moisture hope it comes in soon for some more snow

  31. well, the snow has finally tapered off, coming down just as “hard” but tiny tiny flakes now, its fizzling out. took a final measurement at 2″.

    not bad given the date.

  32. Close to 3″ of new snow and it is still coming down. I checked two different radar images and the back edge appears to be over Beaverton now. It must have really stalled since Sophia said at 10pm, that the back edge was getting close to that area and things should begin to dry out around midnight. Tripcheck cameras showed lots of snow except right in town and from Troutdale east.

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