No Evening Snow; Forecast Goes Off Track Into Ravine

11:30pm Sunday…

Things were working out just fine through about 7pm tonight.

  1. Lots of rain, mixed with snow at times in parts of the metro area with cold enough temps at the surface for snow (low-mid 30s)
  2. Heavy snow just west and north of the metro area.  3-5″ in Astoria, 8″ Clatskanie, 3-8″ Longview, & 18″ at Sunset Summit Rest Area.
  3. No issues traveling around most areas in the lowlands
  4. The low-level cool air actually moved FARTHER south than expected this afternoon; Eugene’s wind was north for a while.

Then things went wrong as that snow forecast train jumped the tracks…BUST!  It’s painfully obvious (from my point of view) that models totally missed the above freezing air that remained overhead all the way through the evening.  In the end things are turning out almost exactly like last night’s GFS and ECMWF model snow forecasts; little or nothing in the lowest elevations from the metro area south to Salem.  Yeah, this one stings, like the lack of ice back in early December or was it early January?  This is the 2nd event that has turned into at least a partial bust.  But out of 7 difficult winter forecasts, maybe that’s not so bad in our climate.

We’ll be lucky to get a trace of snow in the next two hours as the back edge of the steady precipitation moves overhead.  Most of us just stay wet between now and 5am.

If you want to see snow, pretty much your only hope is several bands of snow showers that move through the region around daybreak Monday.  This will be similar to the very first snow shower event we saw on Monday, February 5th.  Exciting to see, but won’t have much affect on the morning commute:


The rest of this week should be uneventful and we MIGHT get several days of dry weather starting next weekend.  It’s still a week or so too early to break out of the winter inversion and see 55-65 degree weather, but we’re getting closer to that first stretch of “false spring”.

Chief Meteorologist Mark Nelsen


55 Responses to No Evening Snow; Forecast Goes Off Track Into Ravine

  1. boydo3 N Albany says:

    And next come the heavy rains again!

  2. Windsday says:

    I don’t know how representative of the central/southern valley this is but Aumsville/Stayton only got 3 and 1/2 inches mainly from the December 2016 event.

    Three and one half inches of lovely snow but a far cry from places further north that got buried. You’d think it was Jan 1950 or something for Portland which I think was really cold onshore flow.

  3. Windsday says:

    Garbage in. garbage out. It’s a no-brainer that unless Artic air is nearby to tap into it isn’t going to snow at 35F. Even I knew it was no go for snow when it went to 50F during the day with no source for cold but it is politically incorrect to point out obvious flaws.

    Go back to sleep silly Americans and especially ignore king euro. (Weather Bell) because that costs money when you can enjoy crap for free! Windows Teeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeen!

  4. JJ78259 says:

    Turned the pool heater on yesterday we have some 87 degree weather hitting us tomorrow and the next day the kids wanted to go swimming I will most likely stick my toe also. Feeling the warmth again will be nice!

  5. My desire for snowy stormy cold winters it seems is diametrically opposed to the actual outcomes. I’m not moving for awhile so enjoy.

  6. 0.56″ water equivalent in 4.5″ of wet snow. No wonder the places that had 8+” from this storm had so much trouble with outages and downed trees.

  7. JERAT416 says:

    Where is the “how much snow did you get and what elevation are you at” post?

  8. Deer Is. at 750' says:

    Oh my, just got home from work in ne pdx. My 8″ base is down to just under 6″ but it is snowing again!

  9. 18″ now after the latest band of snow pushed through

  10. John says:

    I would have been happy with an inch or the in close in East Portland, but it seemed, and Mark did say, that any snow in low elevation Portland would be a marginal thing. Since my wife had to drive to Yakima this morning, our household overall approves of this forecast bust – if you can even call it that. I think it’s more a case of weather that came in right on top of the predictions in spots and came in on the lower bound of the forecast in others. Thank you for this blog!

    • Windsday says:

      That’s because unlike automated software Mark is a real person that knows climo like the back of his hand due to experience.

      No computer will ever replicate that no matter how hard they push the agenda. Without real meterologists onboard we will have worse forecasts as more trusts get pushed into automation as this generation trusts AI more then any other.

      My generation were aware of the dangers and anybody who knew anything about computers knew to stay away from dodgy Joe Blow websites and keep their firewall protected/updated.

      But hey don’t worry it will all be a chip in your brain and YOU will be the computer sending data information in one giant bit torrent world.

      Ahhhhhhh bit torrents!

      BUZZZZZZZZZZ! (Insert sound of giant loud game buzzer)

      Oops! Sorry we can’t call it torrents since that obviously is linked with piracy! We will call it data management.

      Ahhhh much better.

  11. EY (Oak Grove) says:


    Oh wait, I mean, “busted record.” That was the rainiest day at PDX in the month of February, just barely beating out February 6th, 1996… Not to mention being only the second time that PDX saw more than 2″ of rainfall in one calendar day. Definitely something amazing, even if there was no snow and to me, that’s something to be excited about.

    • W7ENK says:

      “…only the second time that PDX saw more than 2″ of rainfall in one calendar day.” ??

      I question the accuracy of that claim. I was just looking back at my own records, and in the last 8 years I’ve had a handful of days with over 2 inches of precip. On December 7, 2015 I had 3.14 inches, so PDX had to have been well over 2.

      Yeah, I just looked and PDX has 2.67″ on that day.

    • EY (Oak Grove) says:

      I meant “one calendar day in February.” I thought I had added that part and apparently I didn’t.

      And yeah, I remember the 2.67″ of rain in December of 2015 as well.

    • GTS1K' says:

      No need to explain oneself to Mr. Fisk……

      ……he’s OK without it.:-)

    • Windsday says:

      3.14 is pretty impressive!

  12. Been snowing again for over an hour, but the snow is super-gloppy and really isn’t accumulating, so still about 4.5″ total for this event. Expect it will mix with or change to rain within the next hour. The hills away from the water must really be getting buried today.

  13. A few pics from today

  14. Wendy-Silverlake, WA says:

    11 inches was our final total. It’s compressed down to just over 9 inches. The temp is 37, it’s a blizzard outside. Just down the driveway (which is probably 60-100 foot elevation difference) it’s raining.

    • Wendy-Silverlake, WA says:

      Multiple trees down on the driveway. Some cracked, some just came uprooted with the weight of the snow.

  15. Garron 1/3 of a mile from Hillsboro Airport says:

    Maybe a week early, but I am purdee sure that Mark has his winter forks polished looking ahead at the upcoming pattern? It was fun while it lasted! I haven’t paid for so many tickets to the wishcasting roller coaster in many a winters’! Always sad when winter forecasm season is over, but the park will reopen some time in mid Nov. Until then, the bottom of the cliff BBQ is going to happen soon, I am sure that Steve Pierce will be posting that bulletin soon…

  16. Roland Derksen says:

    Definetly a winter to remember.

  17. Longview 400 ft says:

    Currently 34.3
    Just under 5 inches

    Last night before bed, I went out to check my snow measurement and heard continuous sounds of breaking branches. Quite impressive to hear that without any sound of wind accompaniment.

    • Longview 400 ft says:

      I have to agree with earlier posts that this has been one of the best winters of my lifetime.

      2008-2009 the best because of all the snow we got at Christmas. This year has to be second. January of 1980 will take 3rd place because we did not have to go to school for a whole week (7th grade), had over two feet in that storm.

      Total snow for the year 25 inches.

    • runrain says:

      Still nowhere close to 68-69, but then I’d rather trade younger for not having that experience – ha!

    • It’s not an epic winter in my neck of the woods but still not bad at all. A nice change of pace from a long string of snowless (or nearly so) winters. I have no complaints, particularly considering my (lack of) elevation and proximity to salt water.

      On the latter subject, there’s 3+” on the ground even right on the bayshore!

  18. Destiny says:

    It’s trying to an trying to snow in Corvallis. Rain and snow mix.

  19. Anonymous says:

    Kids are devastated. LOL. Total bust.

  20. W7ENK says:

    Nothing. Even those morning snow showers Mark mentioned above were a bust! Marine air brought in by the Westerlies behind the cold front actually served to warm up the lowest layers of the atmosphere. My temperature went from 35 to 38 post FROPA. I guess no one saw that coming, or just completely forgot about that silly little caveat in our maritime climate?

    Anyway, Seattle (Puget Sound region) finally got theirs — anywhere from a couple inches to a solid foot — so I guess that makes everyone even now. The Washington Weather Weenies can stop with all their quasi-suicidal crying they’ve been doing for the last month.

    • Anonymous says:

      I saw it and I’m not a meteorologist. The weather app clearly showed the temps warming rather than cooling

    • The Dome is now back where it belongs. 🙂

    • W7ENK says:

      Oh, I saw it coming, too. Many times over the past several days I’ve been equating this current pattern to January 2012, and aside from only a couple minor differences, a January 2012 redux is pretty much exactly how it played out.

      I guess The Dome decided to work overtime after its little “vaycay” up North, huh? :-p

  21. 12″ + and still coming down. 28.5F

  22. Haven’t gone out and measured it yet (still pretty dark), but it’s really a winter wonderland here on Bainbridge Island! And thanks to the PSCZ, still snowing!

    😀😂 😂

  23. JERAT416 says:

    I suppose this will help make the folks happy that missed out on the last few events.

  24. Alohabb says:

    Most of us really didn’t want the snow so it being s bust was great!

  25. You can’t win ’em all, Portland. And after the big dump you got last month, you really don’t have much to complain about this winter. It’s Seattle’s turn this time.

  26. Redland450' says:

    We understand!! Thanks for all your hard work! Bummed I didn’t get snow but a bust is to be expected sometimes!

  27. No complaints here. One of the best winters in a long time.

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