Last night’s forecast was tough, but it all worked out really well this morning. We forecast NOTHING to a TRACE at the lowest elevations and up to 1″ up around 1,000′ (previous posting). Most folks at least saw snow in the air, and everyone here at work I’ve talked to had at least some dusting. That would include east Portland, Happy Valley, Lake Oswego, Beaverton, Tigard, Cedar Mill, West Hills, SW Portland, Oregon City etc…
It looks like inner E/SE Portland, Milwaukie, and North Portland may have seen no sticking? At least that’s what I could see at 8:30am on the ODOT Cams. Vancouver may have been hosed too. I didn’t see much on those traffic cams either.
What a cold day! The freezing level only went a little bit above the top of the West Hills and appears to be around 1,500′ this evening. It’ll drop just a little overnight; but with any clearing any spot could drop to or below freezing. Watch for icy spots if you are on wet roads later. There are still flurries out there and anyone could see a brief dusting overnight, although I think we’ll be all dry after midnight.
Tomorrow we see drier and cold air coming down from the north, so still a chilly day but much brighter in the afternoon.
Saturday’s Possible Snow:
The verdict is in, models have all gone dry, at least all of today’s models. Energy and surface low pressure stays well offshore instead of coming down right over us. So we’ve removed any precipitation wording on our forecast. Of course there’s a small chance that could change, but everything is screaming DRY for now.
The Long Range:
Wow, either mainly or totally dry for the next 10-14 days! A strong upper level ridge builds just offshore from Sunday through about the 20th. Here’s the WRF-GFS for Sunday evening:
With the ridge quite close and high upper-level heights, temps in the higher elevations will be the warmest we have seen in quite a while. Both the ECMWF and GFS show 50+ degree temperatures up around 5,000′ next Wednesday and Thursday! We’ll start chilly in the lower elevations of course and we won’t see those temperatures even later next week down here; it’ll be a classic inversion setup.
Last time we had dry weather with upper level ridging nearby (just to our east) we saw strong east wind; this time will be different. With an upper level ridge just to our west, surface high pressure will be strong over us and to the west as well. This means weak ONSHORE flow for at least early next week. As a result, if we get low-level moisture in here after a cold and dry weekend, we’ll have a tough time getting it out of here. Yes, this means if we get fog or low clouds they won’t go anywhere. Our 7 Day forecast looks quite sunny next week but that may or may not happen. It may be a cool and gray week, we’ll see.
Chief Meteorologist Mark Nelsen