That Was Fun: Metro Area Snow

December 27, 2015

4pm Sunday…

  • It was a bit late getting going, but things turned out almost exactly as forecast (a nice change).
  • Accumulation on roads was only in higher elevations closer to 1,000’ and above…West Hills, Mt. Scott etc…  I saw a report of 2” around 1,000’ in Forest Heights area (thanks Mikayla)
  • Accumulation is pretty much done since showers will be on the decrease now through the evening
  • Lower elevations (in cities) was a rain/snow mix depending on where you were. West/northwest suburbs (Hillsboro/Scappoose/Banks) did get some light accumulation and the coldest temps.

ROADS IN THE WEST HILLS ARE SNOW-COVERED RIGHT NOW ABOVE 700’ OR SO.   Pic from Andrew Mork in Forest Heights area:



METRO AREA TONIGHT:  Mixed showers mostly end by 10pm.  Temps hold steady above freezing, might even rise a degree or two in the hills where it is right at 32 degrees,  so FREEZING OF ROADS IS UNLIKELY DUE TO CLOUDY SKIES, but I’ll keep an eye on it.  Any clearing would bring icy spots since roads are wet.

Driving to work between 2-2:45pm was real interesting…totally dry until about Fairview, then flakes got bigger and bigger through Gateway area.  As I got closer to downtown some rain mixed in, but mainly snow.  Going through the tunnel on US26 I entered into a nice winter wonderland of frosted Douglas Firs on both sides of the highway on the climb up to 700′ at Sylvan.  At that point you could see some snow on the exit ramp. But MOST INTERESTING was that within 1/2 mile coming down past the cemetery, all snow on trees and most on the ground disappeared!  Even though it was a higher elevation than down around the zoo to the east and below where there was plenty of snow.  Most likely that was caused by easterly wind piling up colder air against the east side of the West Hills, allowing snowflakes to make it farther down in the atmosphere without melting east of Sylvan.  That’s my guess.  It would only be noticeable in these real marginal rain/snow conditions.  After that it was just a rain/snow mix the rest of the way to the Cornell Exit where FOX12 is located.  Good geeky stuff

More later…

Chief Meteorologist Mark Nelsen