Temperatures warmed…slightly…today. It appears the airport hit 34 or 35 degrees. Snow & ice doesn’t melt fast, even with morning sunshine, at that temperature. Cool air is still pouring out of the Gorge, although the wind is relatively light. The airmass within the Gorge has modified a bit further, with Hood River now about 5 degrees warmer than before things got started Christmas Eve midday.
Rumors of more freezing rain, sleet, or snow abound; here’s the deal.
- IF this was a typical winter afternoon and the weather pattern was exactly the same but 40 degrees right now? I’d forecast cloudy skies tonight with a few sprinkles or showers. Then more widespread sprinkles or showers at times tomorrow. There’s no big storm headed our way, just a few showers.
- But it isn’t a typical winter afternoon and temperatures will still be cold enough for either snow/liquid rain to stick or form a glaze on surfaces tonight IF PRECIPITATION ACTUALLY FALLS OUT OF THE SKY. IT COULD REMAIN MAINLY OR ALL DRY. I think it’s unlikely we get more than 1/2″ snow. Just a dusting in many spots.
- Not all of the metro will see cold enough temps for frozen roads tomorrow morning. Lots of cloud cover SHOULD keep some areas only right around freezing.
So here’s my forecast:
FOR THE AM COMMUTE
- I think there will be additional icy areas that were not there this evening, assuming showers do show up. Expect lots of slippery areas in the West Hills and eastside where temperatures will be coldest. We may not get a total freeze of roads westside, but ANYWHERE could see a dusting of snow or fresh ice. With scattered showers it’s tough to know exactly where that happens.
- Roads will improve a bit more tomorrow. Today my drive on the freeways was just dry or wet in spots, no ice from Troutdale to Beaverton. Actually out in Beaverton you wouldn’t even know there was ice/snow two days ago…almost nothing left except on barkdust/grass in spots. But I know many areas eastside and in the hills still have ice on roads. That should improve tomorrow.
By the way, Thursday and Friday we’ll be around 50 or above. The cold weather is just about finished…More later.
Chief Meteorologist Mark Nelsen