Windy Evening Ahead: Storm Update

3:15pm Thursday…

Update for the first storm moving over us now…more on Saturday’s system at the end of the post

RAIN  There are no watches/warnings/advisories for any kind of flooding

It’s been raining steadily, but just a gentle Pacific Northwest style rain.  Still, we’ve already picked up over an inch.


Since it hasn’t come down heavily there has been no flooding of course.    This evening the rain will pick up for a few hours 5-9pm and at that point we could see some blocked drains etc… for localized flooding, then the rain mainly ends after 10pm.


Wind Advisory for the western valleys (including metro area) for this evening:  Gusts 35-50 mph likely sometime between 5-10pm.

High Wind Warning for coastal strip this evening: Gusts 65-80 mph between 5-10pm.

As expected, very quiet out there this early afternoon, and no wind has even made it to the south valley yet so we’re still at least a couple hours away from a gusty south wind.  Should be plenty of power outages and a few trees down here and there through the evening once it gets going.  The wind calms down to more reasonable levels after 10-11pm.  Keep in mind that gusts between 40-50 mph two years ago in late October (with leaves on the trees) caused quite a bit of havoc.  Some of you will be getting out the candles this evening!



Technical stuff for this evening:  The HRRR and NAM models keep shooting a closed and deepening surface low right up the coastline in the next 8 hours.  Looking at satellite imagery that seems overdone and I sure don’t see one.  I like the “open wave” look so the ECMWF/GFS are more likely correct.  As a result I’ve discounted the HRRR showing gusts 50-60 mph this evening.  I think 35-45 is the safest bet.  That’s not a big deal in winter, but as mentioned above a different story with the leaves on the trees and soaked ground.  There is still a perfect alignment of the isobars west-east perpendicular to the western valleys so we’re going to get a nice surge of wind.  After midnight the wind relaxes.



Lots of showers and a showers/sunbreaks sort of day between storms.  But some of the showers could be intense and a passing rumble is possible too.



Two important points

  1. There is no repeat of the Columbus Day Storm coming Saturday
  2. There will be more power outages and downed trees, likely a bit more wind than tonight both inland and at the coast

Models have come into FAR better agreement now and they all are quite similar.  The GFS came much farther east and the ECMWF gave up its nasty windstorm for Oregon inland areas.

A deep area of low pressure, somewhere around 965-970 millibars central pressure, will make landfall somewhere on the Washington coastline Saturday afternoon/evening.  Past storms that make landfall that far north tend to give us a “decent” windstorm here in the valleys, but not a crippling “every 20 years” sort of windstorm.  Still, if gusts go above 50 mph in the metro area (that may happen), we’ll get even more damage than tonight.  Regardless, the coast is going to get nailed by a stronger storm on Saturday.

It was very nice to see models come together this morning…48-60 hours before the event.  That’s pretty good.  Check out the ECMWF and NAM…quite similar:



A rough first guess for wind gusts in this setup would be 45-60 mph in the Portland metro area.  That said, during the past few windstorms the PDX observation site has been an overachiever compared to surrounding areas.  Remember the 67 mph gust during the December 2014 storm?


This could be a similar event, but someone else gets a 60 and the rest of us get 45-55 mph gusts.  That said, any gusts above 50 will be a big deal this early in the season.

Chief Meteorologist Mark Nelsen


29 Responses to Windy Evening Ahead: Storm Update

  1. Ryan (Walnut Grove) says:

    We’ve had a pretty solid wind here in Walla Walla… Looking at Mesonet looks like gusts are around 35-40 in Walla Walla proper. There is a reading of 61mph just to the east in the Blues.

  2. Wendy-Silverlake, WA says:

    Now that was some serious rain 10 minutes ago.

  3. marinersfan85 says:

    It’s begun in Newberg

  4. Boydo3 N. Albany says:

    Just an average fall rainstorm here..

  5. Boring Oregon says:

    Still no wind at all. Bust in progress?

  6. Wendy-Silverlake, WA says:

    The new roof is getting a workout tonight!!! Sounds like a herd of elephants running across it. There’s branches everywhere!!!

  7. Ron says:

    big time wind in Astoria –the lights have blinked three of four times already!

  8. GTS1K' says:

    So far, I can exhale higher gusts than this meh…

    • Diana F. says:

      The wind chimes hanging by the front door have.not.moved.once !!! It’s CALMER than CALM. This ALWAYS happens when I put us on Official Storm Watch at our house. It’s like Mother Nature is publicity shy here in northeast Vancouver! It’s only when we do not expect (cos we missed the forecast #SAYWHAT) nor prepare for Exciting Weather that we actually Get Some. What’s a geeky 🤓 family to do for Fun Around Here? Or do we need to move to Fargo???

  9. …meanwhile, over here in Cove ive got sustained 27, gust 33 out of the SE…just below getting concerned level…

  10. JJ78259 says:

    Looks like we have another week of Weather Dan Weather before it cools off to lower 80s in San Antonio.

  11. Mary’s peak 59 G83. Pressure headed up.

  12. Thanks for the updated assessment of saturday’s storm. In the meantime we’re still some distance away from tonight’s weather. So I’ll take it one storm at a time!

  13. WEATHERDAN says:

    I lived through the Columbus Day Storm. I have no desire to see another. Peace

  14. GTS1K' says:

    I’ll take wind gusts for 60+, Alex!

  15. What’s the timing for the main wind event on Saturday? I know we’re still a few days away but is this morning, mid-day, evening?

  16. W7ENK says:

    Make sure you share this little pro-tip with any of your friends or neighbors who’ve recently moved here from California. This is likely the first time in their lives they’ve ever experienced real rain!

  17. Sapo says:

    Yeah, the models have definitely come into better agreement regarding Saturday and the ECMWF toned it down a bit…good to see we won’t be getting super damaging winds. Looks like it’ll be windy though, plus there’s another day, and things could potentially change.

  18. W7ENK says:

    Strap yourselves in, it’s gonna be a bumpy night!

    • GTS1K' says:

      IMHO, this stuff can go sideways in about 20 minutes.

      Models or no models.

      Weather don’t give a darn

    • GTS1K' says:

      aaaand… apply!

      whoosh goes the weasel…..

      rippin’ up here as of 9 ish.

      more, please.

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