A Snowy Night Ahead

6pm Wednesday

Here we go again!

“Snow v3.0” is about to arrive.   This system is very similar to yesterday’s where a surface low pressure system slides south through western Canada, than slides south along the Washington/Oregon coastline.  This one should move right onto the Oregon coast and slide into SW Oregon.  Anywhere north and east of the low pressure center has a decent chance of sticking snow during the night.  That means that this time those of you in the central/south Willamette Valley may FINALLY see a snowfall.  Remember that Salem/Albany still haven’t seen measurable snow so far this winter.  You can see the movement of the low in the slideshow:

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  • Light snow develops the next few hours across NW Oregon, spreading east and south
  • Expect 1-3″ almost all inland locations from SW Washington down into at least the central Willamette Valley
  • Trace-2″ is possible along the beaches themselves

One weak band of snow flurries just passed over the metro area and now we see deeper moisture/snow moving onto the north Oregon coastline.  By 10pm, snow should be falling along the north/central coastline and into the Coast Range.  In fact by 10pm snow may have begun in the metro area too.  Recall yesterday it showed up 8 hours ahead of schedule!

Temperatures are in the mid 30s at this hour, but more important is the dewpoint.  We’re in the mid-upper 20s which means falling snow will evaporate into the “dry” air, cooling the airmass.  The result is that we’ll have no problem getting snow to stick anywhere north of that low pressure center.  In the southern Willamette Valley there may be just enough southerly breeze (like with last night’s system) to keep the sticking snow level off the valley floor.  We’ll see how that plays out.  Luckily models are in slightly better agreement with snow accumulation up north.  Here’s the GEM  snow contour, with the snow forecast from each model on the table.  This is the main reason we’re forecasting 1-3″.

Now our 00z RPM just came in with better accumulation in the metro area:


So we’ll see how this plays out, at least it’s happening when most of us will be asleep and hardly anyone will be on the roads.  It’s also kind of nice that we’ll be able to drive around like normal once again tomorrow afternoon.

Tomorrow night, assuming skies clear out as expected, we’ll likely have another very cold night.  This morning at the last minute it cleared out at PDX, allowing the temperature to plummet to 23.  We have the same setup for Friday morning.  Maybe a late season 19?

Chief Meteorologist Mark Nelsen





62 Responses to A Snowy Night Ahead

  1. Lee Wilson says:

    Last post for a bit.

    Were at 35 degrees F, and making some power off the solar array.
    we have winds so I am thinking it will either warm up faster or the wind chill will slow the melt.

    but , that sun sure feels good.
    a freindly reminder, please where eye protection, snow blindness is no fun.G

    Oh and now yo know why, I mute the videos lol.

  2. Traci Myers says:

    Hi we are going to lincoln city or. mar 9th weekend I saw there might be a chance of snow do you know if that is true? I don’t want to chance it . thanks

    • Diana F. says:

      I’d have to estimate that you’ll be just fine, as any snow we’re getting is not sticking to roads, and March 9th is literally 16 days away. You don’t say where you’re starting from on your trip to the Beach, but unless you reside at the top of mt. hood, I think you’re ok : )

  3. MasterNate says:

    Marks warm bias is showing up on the 7 day. Models do not support that. Looks down right cold for the next 10 days for this time of year. I wish this pattern would have set up sometime in December/January. We would be snowed in!

    • MasterNate says:

      BTW Mark, great job nailing the last 2 snow events! That’s why your 2nd to none.

    • It may be late-in-the-season snow, and it may be less long-lasting than it would have been a month earlier, but hey, I’ll take it! This can no longer be considered a disappointing La Niña (just an oddball one) in my book. Particularly in light of it delivering a White Christmas, and the earliest snow in decades at my location.

  4. Ken in Wood Village says:

    Went to bed early cuz the heavy snow wasn’t hitting me but when I woke up it snowed good. My back deck looks like 1/11/17…lol. Roads are icy out my way. Had to pick my sis up to take her to a doctor appointment cuz she’s sick 😭

  5. lurkingsince'14 says:

    Looks like the radar is sending some light stuff down from the North in an hour or so? Either way, looking forward to sunshine and a nice crisp afternoon with snow on the ground 🙂

  6. Don Sherwood 200ft says:

    1.5” snow in Sherwood 200ft. 31 degrees

  7. GTS1Kft says:

    OK, on a wooden tabletop on the deck, we have snow 11″ deep as of this morning. 4″ or so overnight. Pretty to look at but I saw enough last January…

    …and yet:



  8. W7ENK says:

    Woke up to 4 inches new snow at 5:30 this morning in Milwaukie!

    Beautiful morning. 🙂

    • W7ENK says:

      Roads stayed warm, so no ice anywhere, just sloppy slush. It took me a little longer to toss together some chili in the Crock-Pot before I left, so I’m about a half hour behind where I wanted to be…

      Thankfully, the trains are on schedule again today. No repeat of last years’ classic TriMet debacle.

  9. Stopped shortly after I took my final measurement last night, so 2.25″ it is for me. Because the storm is long gone for me, it’s an absolutely stunning clear morning where I get to enjoy all bluish/purplish casts of light as day dawns. It’s also a total icy mess on the roads: last night’s snow was on the slushy side to start with, and the roads were initially above freezing. And all that froze solid when it cleared off.

  10. Registered Nerd says:

    More snow than previous night here in SW Portland, about 2.5”, but obviously was a warmer night as streets are more slush than ice. Guess the system was slower to push through meaning less clearing and cooling?

  11. Wendy - Silverlake, WA says:

    6 inches new overnight and still going strong.

  12. Lee Wilson says:

    Busses on snow routes and school 2 hour delay.about 1 inch of snow

    • Angie80 says:

      School cancelled

      • Lee Wilson says:

        Yup, got that robo call, but LONGVIEW is running 2 hours late….

        Part question for Mark, framing a system North of us, looks pretty bad to its core, what is its chances of hitting us here in the Southwest Washington area by Monday? Or sooner?
        And that system is producing-20 Celsius. In Canada.

  13. JERAT416 says:

    2″ on Bull Mtn (630 ft) as of 3:30 this morning.

  14. R.G. - Oregon City 365’ says:

    Measured 2” new on what was bare asphalt and 3” new on the deck that was shoveled earlier today…had to know.
    Railing has ~5” including leftovers from yesterday. Shaded side of a hill with little melting today.

  15. Max in Fairview says:

    Nice dumping of snow here.

  16. Hazel Dell Mole says:

    Snowing for the last 3 hrs relatively light but pilling up all the same guessing at least 1 inch on top of 3 time for us moles to burrow deeper!

    • Sprayandpay says:

      Isn’t it funny how Oregon shuts down when it snows? I mean the tiniest amounts causes this or that to be canceled even organizations like Meals On Wheels!

      • Not really. Places that get more snow more often are much better equipped to deal with it. I used to be amazed from afar how places like Seattle and Portland shut down after minor snowfalls, then I moved to this part of the world and got to experience how generally lacking the plowing and sanding is (and how generally lacking most peoples’ winter driving skills are).

  17. R.G. - Oregon City 365’ says:

    Snowing hard the last 45 minutes or so with almost 2” new since 11pm. Snow rate was decent from 8-11 but only a light amount on cars and decks. This latest push has been impressive and even the dome gave way. Trip check showing snow cover from Newberg to Wilsonville north already. Appreciate all the effort with these forecasts and explanations given; the various precip totals with different models is also fun to see as the event approaches. Many thanks Mr. Nelsen & colleagues!

  18. 2.25″ here now, still snowing lightly. Going to bed.

  19. W7ENK says:

    Snowing lightly and steadily for the last two and a half hours, but nothing is sticking. The roads we’re dry before it started, now they’re wet.

    Temperature and dewpoint have come together at 34 degrees. I don’t see this panning out for me tonight, which is fine. Even if it sticks in the grass but leaves the roads wet, I’m happy with that.

    I’ll see what it looks like in the morning.

    G’night folks!

  20. Diana F. says:

    Just a blip of a dusting in E.Vancouver so far—wasn’t really counting on anything, as honestly, it seemed too good to be true! But we shall see. Good luck everybody, may your totals be adequate for your needs! This is some crazy stuff ’round here!

  21. anonymouse says:

    Wonder how cold we will get tonight…

  22. anonymouse says:

    Not sticking as well tonight.

  23. Just went out and took a measurement. 1.75″. This event is exceeding expectations for me.

  24. lurkingsince'14 says:

    Started light maybe 45 mins ago but now a steady snow at about 350ft in sw pdx; feels like it’ll be a better event than yesterday at this location 🙂

  25. Garrison-Aumsville says:

    Starting to snow in Aumsville!!!

  26. Andy says:

    Light snow Albany.32f and hoping for more.

  27. Longview 400 ft says:

    Currently 30.7
    An inch and an eighth of new snow tonight!!!
    High today was 36.9
    Heavily snowing!!

  28. specialK says:

    LOL. I love how on night two, it’s like crickets in here. We’re so over it!

  29. North PDX says:

    Coming down in north Portland more mixed at theoment tho.

  30. ocpaul says:

    snowing in OC, at 32.9

    • Sprayandpay says:

      Is OC Orange County? Oh you mean Oregon City! Glad they fixed up their downtown and it’s looking good again. In the 90s their downtown was in terrible shape.

  31. Lee Wilson says:

    Moderately snowing,.. All that was bare is now recovered.. Looks like another cancelled school day…maybe Friday, our son will have school?

    Looks like snow make up days will be coming m..hmm..

    We’re at 32 and 99 percent. Humidity. Ammeter.. Frozen..

    To much snow piles up on the weather unit.. Seriously considering on getting some nicer gear. After we get a new generator and a new set of agms.

  32. JohnD says:

    Odd that the blog is not lighting up more at the moment! Steady light snow here in inner SW at 210′. 32.1′ temperature. Hopefully not just a precursor shower and instead an early beginning to a several inch event!

  33. Nahtalkin says:

    OK, round 3…..let’s just get this over with since we’re not in the dead of winter anymore we just get the drippy spring thaw every day and things kind of turn into a muddy mess on the farm….no fun. Personally I’m ready for the first 80 degree day in early April so I cam become a dedicated naked sun worshiper again.

    • GTS1Kft says:

      All I can imagine based on this comment is that Ted wallows in the mud naked…

      …I wonder if the neighbors are aware of that?

  34. Andy says:

    Finally things look better for Albany area. Currently my weather station is at 32f. Much colder tonight. Bring it on.

  35. ron says:

    it is snowing heavily in Astoria and everything is covered with what looks like about one inch of new accumulation. Unfortunately it’s still 36 degrees.

  36. Diana F. says:

    Absolutely awesome!

  37. W7ENK says:

    Started snowing in Milwaukie about an hour ago. Very light, little tiny snowflakes, drifting down very slowly… fun to watch.

  38. Snowing and sticking here, lawns and bark dust already dusted white. But it’s a very light snow, falling as discrete crystals. If it were warmer and melted as it fell, it would be drizzling. So let’s call it a snizzle.

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