Get ready for strong wind tomorrow! The National Weather Service issued a High Wind Warning this afternoon for the metro area and Cascade foothills, forecasting gusts as high as 60 mph from the east as cold & dry air out of Canada surges south and over the Cascades.
Most locations will see gusts in the 35-50 mph range, but the favored spots (Battle Ground/Hockinson) could see winds a bit stronger in gusts. We’ll see how that works out. Either way a beautiful day with the air turning very dry and blowing all the leaves off the trees. Sunshine from sunrise to sunset.
Pretty much the same thing for Wednesday as my thinking from last night’s post hasn’t changed much. Models are waffling on the cold air a bit. For example the WRF-GFS says The Dalles will be 35 tomorrow and PDX’s high will be 40. It’s running too cold. I think it’ll be more like 38 and 45. Or PDX could be even warmer.
I still don’t see snow west of the Cascades Thursday unless we get a spot up against the east slopes of the Coast Range or the Scappoose/St. Helens area. Our RPM and the soundings from the WRF-GFS say no snow for the metro area since there will be a warm layer up around 3,000′.
Freezing rain west of the Cascades? Looks unlikely, but there may be isolated spots of icing since it appears the precipitation will be holding off until close to sunrise Thursday. This will be determined by how cold the airmass ends up over us by Wednesday. We’re really not sure how well models are handling that airmass yet. Here are the graphics I used this evening:
As for the Gorge…wow! Evening models have a LOT of moisture for heavy snow/freezing rain. We don’t lose the easterly flow, so the cold air is going to last awhile. This COULD be a historic November snow/ice storm out there. Take a look at the WRF-GFS snow forecast below…a solid foot or more in the central/eastern Gorge during the 24 hours from Thursday to Friday morning. The thick ice (freezing rain) at the west end of the Gorge (Corbett and hills above Washougal) would be devastating with .50″ to 1.50″ rain equivalent.
That forecast is ever so slowly backing off on snow here in the western lowlands.
So that’s it for now…batten down the hatches for wind tomorrow.
Chief Meteorologist Mark Nelsen