Snowstorm Monday Morning in Willamette Valley; Some In Portland Metro Too

11:30am Sunday…

Good news!  With less than 24 hours to go, models have come into very good agreement this morning.  They agree a 2nd winter storm will track through Oregon late tonight and Monday.  They also agree the storm center (lowest pressure) comes onshore around Cape Blanco Monday morning and moves northeast to around Baker City by evening.  Heavy snow will develop on the north side (within 100-150 miles) of this low center as it tracks through the state.  All models agree on this now so the only questions are: how far north do we get heavy snow (4″+), and how far north will ANY snow make it?

Here are my forecasts; reasoning follows after

PORTLAND/VANCOUVER METRO AREA FORECAST

(This includes all areas from St. Helens/Woodland down to a Newberg/Wilsonville/Mollala line)

  • Rain showers late tonight turn to steady snow between 4-7am Monday and it sticks
  • Expect a Trace to 2″ on the ground for the morning commute.
  • Temps barely drop to freezing, so freeways/highways may not turn completely icy
  • Light snow continues through the day, a total of 1-3″ heavy/wet/slushy snow by the time it ends late in day.
  • Late February sun angle means roads warm well above freezing by 10am; I DO NOT EXPECT THE METRO AREA TO BE LOCKED IN FROZEN ROADS ALL DAY
  • MAIN ROADS/FREEWAYS WILL LIKELY BE WET MIDDAY & AFTERNOON

I wouldn’t cancel ANYTHING until we see exactly what happens in the morning.  If we only get 1″ of sloppy/wet snow (low-end forecast), driving will be okay all day long.

COASTAL TOWNS & LONGVIEW/KELSO

  • Either dry or just showers/flurries from Pacific City north and Longview/Kelso
  • Little or no impact on your life there
  • Trace-2″ Lincoln City to Florence.  Very wet/slushy, not too much impact on roads

WOODBURN/SALEM/SILVERTON (CENTRAL VALLEY)

  • Heavy, wet snow 4am-Midday
  • Snowy roads, especially morning
  • 3-5″ total by afternoon, a snowstorm!

ALBANY/CORVALLIS/EUGENE (SOUTH VALLEY)

  • A snowstorm!
  • 4-8″ by afternoon, same starting time
  • Snowy roads much of the day

COLUMBIA RIVER GORGE

  • A snowy day
  • 3-8″, heaviest middle/east end, lightest west end
  • Gusty east wind blowing/drifting snow at west end

TECHNICAL WEATHER GEEK DISCUSSION

It was great to see models fall into line the past two runs with that low pressure center.  It’s also nice that the WRF-GFS and ECMWF are much closer together with the snow totals.   Just looking at the precipitation forecast from the ECMWF you get the picture and see why there’s a much better chance for a big snow event central valley southward.  2″ of precipitation at Eugene but pretty much dry Astoria to Chehalis.  What could go wrong???  Praying that this precip shield isn’t 100 miles farther north = biggest February snowstorm on record, a foot of heavy/wet snow in the metro area!  Or that it’s 50 miles farther south in the end and we have a regular Monday with flurries/showers at times with NO snow.

12zECMWFPrecip

This converts to a snowfall map like this, Eugene to Roseburg gets BURIED by a major snowstorm tomorrow, over a foot!  This would shut down I-5 and bring lots of power lines down in the south valley.  Remember I said SOMEONE between Olympia and Roseburg was going to get a big snowstorm?  At this point Eugene/Roseburg are ground zero.

Euro_Snow_SunAMForecast

Meanwhile the GFS/WRF-GFS had us dry (no snow) on last night’s run, but now has decided to turn things a bit wetter (more white).    That’s ZERO to 2″ metro area, and 8-14″ Eugene to Roseburg!

or_snow24.48.0000

Here are a few more models…the GEM, GFS, HRRR, & RPM.  All produce very little snow in metro area.  Which actually means the ECMWF is the only model giving us significant snow in Portland.  So once again I’m trusting the “King Euro”.  Here are snow totals through 9am tomorrow, when all models except Euro say we’re pretty much done with snowfall

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Notice I’m hitting the “roads won’t be that bad with 1-3″ of snow” in the metro area tomorrow pretty hard?

That’s because the last few days of February we get a lot of energy from the sun even through thick cloud cover.  A good example is this morning.  Snow fell in many hilly parts of the metro area.  The pavement surface temperature at Division/I-205 and Sylvan/US26 both dropped to right around 32 degrees at sunrise with snow showers.  Yet at 11am they are both already up to 40-42 degrees.  The result is that less than 2″ snow, or snow that doesn’t fall very heavily during the day won’t be able to accumulate on pavement after about 9am all the way through about 7pm.  Now if it just DUMPS snow, (central/southern valley) it can still stick.  But at this point I don’t see that in the Portland metro area.

BEYOND TOMORROW AFTERNOON

Cold east wind continues to blow tomorrow night through Wednesday, so with any clearing, those wet roads freeze for the Tuesday morning commute.  Some models bring a little more precipitation over us Tuesday night or Wednesday AM.  We’ll see if that’s the frozen variety or not.  Clearly the northern part of the jet stream wants to hang on into early March.  We still have another week of cold weather ahead…

Chief Meteorologist Mark Nelsen

 

 

89 Responses to Snowstorm Monday Morning in Willamette Valley; Some In Portland Metro Too

  1. Evan -- Cedar Mill says:

    If it wasn’t already over, it’s over now. Euro only painting an inch for metro.

  2. Jason Hougak says:

    Precipitation band just entering southern Marion county and far southeastern Clackamas county.

  3. rmlounsbury says:

    Looks like our band of moisture has begun its march northward.

  4. boydo3 says:

    Presently snow mixed with rain in Bandon.

  5. W7ENK says:

    Trace in Portland, if we’re lucky, but probably dry.

    1 inch from Woodburn, South.

    2-3 inches Salem.

    3-5 inches Albany.

    4-6+ inches Corvallis/Eugene.

    Higher hills, esp West facing slopes get more under precip. This only applies to the Central and S WV. Everything North of Woodburn/South of Portland sees a dusting, regardless of elevation, heavier the farther South you go.

    Vancouver sees nothing.

    NoPo probably sees nothing.

    Gorge wind doesn’t turn on until after 8am. By then, too late for snow at PDX. Sun rises, temp rises, precip moves over PDX and too warm for sticking. 33-35 at onset. Evap cooling doesn’t come into play, sun angle too high. Maybe flakes in the air most of the day in Portland metro, but if it doesn’t stick it doesn’t count.

    We’ll all know in 24 hours.

    G’night.

  6. Ken in Wood Village says:

    Well, the East Winds are picking up at Crown Point. I hope we get something early tomorrow 😉🌨❄

  7. paulbeugene says:

    Finally changed over to snow at 500’ here in Eugene near U of O. Looks to me we may see about 6-7 hours of accumulating snow.

  8. Jason Hougak says:

    High today of 35F after 4” of snow. Currently at freezing with a solid frozen crust on the fresh snow. This February has been amazing with 21” and several days with less than 1” accumulations.
    Watching the radar for northerly movement. The road cams in the s. Valley toward Roseburg show heavy snow.

  9. JohnD says:

    GOLU RULES! I keep saying it. ‘Have to say too that I am “feeling it” on this one–as a lifelong W. Oregonian . Plus just enough support from conventional models to show at least “some” fun coming up! Enjoy! 37.4’ and falling–along with falling barometric pressure here in inner SWPDX!

    • Joshua Lake Oswego says:

      We are going to have to rely on GOLU or radar for hope. The 00z models so far are backing off on PDX yet again. Evolving into a non-event. Not much more than this morning.

  10. rmlounsbury says:

    Man that precip has a long ways to go to get near PDX.

    • Joshua Lake Oswego says:

      Should arrive here around 4-5 am. The 18z ECMWF has it sticking around until 4 pm or so. There is narrow swath that encompasses the metro area for a few hours after the main band pushes through.

    • rmlounsbury says:

      Well yes, but there still isn’t much modelled for moisture.

      • Joshua Lake Oswego says:

        True. The ECMWF has backed off on snow totals. It was the most aggressive model. Somewhere in the Roseburg to Eugene area is going to get close to 2’. We will be lucky with 2”.

        • Larry says:

          Are you only talking about the Roseburg to Eugene area or has the ECMWF backed off the snow totals for the general area?
          Also if you have any links feel free to share me cause I wanna see what you’re looking at.

        • Joshua Lake Oswego says:

          The 18z backed off from the 12z for the Portland area.

  11. Jimmy Lipper says:

    Just saw Weather Channel has increased moisture content to 70% that’s a good sign

  12. Auroraskye Skye says:

    Oh goodie!!! I sooooo want snow!!!

    On Sun, Feb 24, 2019 at 11:35 AM FOX 12 Weather Blog wrote:

    > Mark Nelsen posted: “11:30am Sunday… Good news! With less than 24 hours > to go, models have come into very good agreement this morning. They agree > a 2nd winter storm will track through Oregon late tonight and Monday. They > also agree the storm center (lowest pressure) com” >

  13. Andy says:

    Really dumping snow on ODOT cameras south of Eugene…Rice hill and just north of Roseburg. Precipitation is moving north. I’m on snow watch here in Albany.

  14. Mycowx (N. Albany) says:

    Hard to believe we’ll get down to freezing here in Albany before the moisture arrives. Sitting at 41F at 4pm and not a hint of wind. Nonetheless, the sleds are waxed, snow clothes drying from a weekend on the slopes, and kid’s hopes for a snow day are high. Fingers crossed, but my expectations are tempered after the busts earlier this month.

  15. Mike says:

    Eugene had at least 4″snow in 2016. This is the first time in 5 years here it has rained T or more for 24 consecutive hours. At 430′ we had a lot of wet snow, bu tit is more a mix now. Given the importance of a slight shift in the low, I would not be surprised if we had no accumulations or if we had 8 or more inches.This should be the first month with more than average rainfall since last April. We are now < 1 foot below normal for the water year. Basin reservoirs 23% full (-15).

  16. Larry says:

    Winter Storm Warning issued for Central Willamette valley and parts of the Coast/Coast Range.

  17. Pgiorgio says:

    One thing is certain. We have a 100% chance of the low shifting a fractional distance either north or south. Could be a few feet or a few miles but one neighborhood over could experience a difference in snow amounts. Possibly millimeters of depth.

  18. paulbeugene says:

    All snow at 800’ in Eugene now, but rain/snow at 500’

    • Pgiorgio says:

      Congrats paul in eugene. You will enjoy large flakes of snow tomorrow.

    • joel294 says:

      Paul, I know you’re not in this to answer questions. I won’t even ask you what you think about this for the S. Valley. Please just keep posting your thoughts.

  19. Randy says:

    Unbelievable February! If this indeed hangs on this week, the entire month except the first few days have been way below normal, and snow mixed or snow has been in most forecasts the entire month. I dont remember that ever, in any month. The good news is that we now know we never bring the fork out until at least March 1st!

    • Pgiorgio says:

      Bring the fork out feb 10th if all long range models show no sign of cold air. They can atleast give some indication.

  20. Tanis Leach says:

    Winter storm warning has been issued from Marion county south. But no text with it. So hyped considering I’m in Corvallis studying with midterms this week. Here is my take:

    Kelso: 0
    PDX: 0-3″, higher south.
    Salem: 2-6″
    Albany/Corvallis: 3-7″
    Eugene: 6-12″
    Roseburg: 6-12″
    Medford: 0
    Bend: ??

    Sorry for another bust Portland but I and some others down in the south valley will be reaping the benefits of this. MISSION SUCCESSFUL!

  21. Snow-Zone Dallas/400ft Roman says:

    I’m calling it I expect 24” of snow by tomorrow afternoon.

  22. Evan -- Cedar Mill says:

    MISSION FAILED — we’ll get em next time

  23. ocpaul says:

    I would pay to move the low further north. Where is the ‘gosnowme’
    fund?

  24. PAUL D says:

    I’m loving the colder than normal February! Finally some records that don’t involve being hotter than normal!!!

  25. Leeateea says:

    I’m assuming more snow if your in the hills above Salem 630’?

  26. runrain says:

    So, now it’s no more model riding and 24/7 on the radar tonight. Sounds like an all nighter to me!

  27. W7ENK says:

    All going South? Gee, imagine that…

    If only someone had seen this coming and said something two days ago, the stores would still have milk, eggs and kale. 🤔

    • joel294 says:

      W7ENK…you were the first one to call this going to the S valley by the way on the blog. Good call!

    • joel294 says:

      Yep, 2/23 at 10:18 AM. W7ENK said “book it” for the S. Valley.

    • W7ENK says:

      Not my point, gentlemen.

      Think of the kale!! 😱

      • Leeateea says:

        So true,I don’t even know why I put that assuming what happened last time,counting my chickens before there hatched I guess!

      • joel294 says:

        I know that you weren’t pointing that out but I thought you deserve props for being the first to say it’s shifting south and the S. Valley gets the bulk of the snow. You said it before anybody else.

        • W7ENK says:

          Actually, I think, technically, Paul said it first as a mere possibility, I just stated it with confidence.

          When each model run is pushing the bullseye Southward by 25 miles, over and over again, and you’ve got roughly 8 more runs to go, you can figure that where the models and reality (Hour Zero) intersect, that gives you about 200 miles of Southward progression. So that’s where I looked, 250 miles South of Friday night’s bullseye (Seattle), 200 miles South of Saturday morning’s bullseye (Olympia), 100 miles South of last night’s bullseye (Portland), 75 miles South of this afternoon’s bullseye (Woodburn), 50 miles South of tonight’s bullseye (Albany), and 0 miles from tomorrow morning’s bullseye, at hour zero. Eugene.

          The wishcasters in Seattle see it shifting away from them and toward Portland and assume it’s going to magically stop shifting, and they get jealous.

          The wishcasters in Portland see it shifting away from Seattle and toward Portland and assume it’s magically going to stop shifting, and they get excited.

          It’s not going to stop shifting. I saw it was going to continue trending South. Model runs and hour zero intersect at Eugene.

          Eugene it is.

          December 2013 redux.

      • JERAT416 says:

        Naaaah, but I might stock up on bacon

  28. Pgiorgio says:

    Eugene buried. Portland dusting. Kelso nothing. Thats the forecast through 10pm tomorrow

  29. JohnD says:

    Yep. Even the smallest shift north would have a huge impact for us. Definitely have not thrown in the towel. Still in the game. Thinking positively!

    • Evan -- Cedar Mill says:

      I’d say we have a 40 % chance of it shifting north

      • Tony Lippschitz says:

        And there’s only a 10percent chance of that

      • Larry says:

        Why do you think that?

        • Ken in Wood Village says:

          There is a possibility the low may move a little further North.

          The NWS said it best, “and stronger lows tend to curl further north than most models suggest”

          In the Area Forecast Discussion, it says the low could be stronger than the models are showing. If that is the case, then the low could move more North. 🙂

      • NB Salem says:

        Don’t be trying to steal the valley’s snow storm! You guys up in the Metro area have had a LOT more snow than we have in Salem for the past several snow storms… this one is OURS! 🙂

  30. Emmanuel says:

    I’m praying 100 miles further north for a historic snow storm here in the west metro area.

  31. EY (Oak Grove) says:

    I’m hoping that it waits just one or two more hours to move in. That’ll make it so I can get to work and not have to worry about being late. Then, if it wants, it can dump a foot in PDX Metro.”

    • Tanis Leach says:

      I hope it shifts a little bit north so Corvallis is in the bullsye. This is due to this week being midterm week and I need tine to study for it.

      For all of you that are sad over minimal snow, keep in mind that Eugene hasn’t had a snowstorm since Feb 2014. Portland had two in 2016-17, 1.5 2017-18 and 1 this year. Eugene is due for one. I would like Portland to get something but Eugene/Corvallis should be the bullsye.

      • joel294 says:

        Eugene is definitely in the bullseye range. I think Corvallis will get more snow than Albany since Corvallis is so close to the coast range.

  32. Evan -- Cedar Mill says:

    This is not ok…
    West metro has gotten short end of stick this year. I have had zero snow at my place while everyone within 50 miles has gotten (or will get) at least 4 inches, some maybe a foot.

    Praying that this shifts north.

    • Anonymous says:

      I’m going to join you in that prayer let’s push this 100 miles north for the west metro area lol

    • Larry says:

      I can somewhat agree with you. My house has only gotten 1 and a half inches of snow from the two prior snow events. Cities around us (including Portland) have received a LOT more snow.
      As a snow lover, it can really annoy you getting the, like you mentioned, ”short end of the stick”. Hopefully King Euro can swoop down and save us all!

  33. Larry says:

    I’m hoping that the low tracks a LITTLE BIT NORTH so I can feel like its January 10-11th 2017 all over again!

  34. Echard says:

    First?!

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