Historic Snowstorm Central and West-Central Oregon

9pm Monday…

Whew, what a storm!  I’ll get to the numbers in a minute.

First, the snow showers have been VERY SLOW to dissipate the 2nd half of today.  It appears they are finally finishing up according to radar.  That means about 1/2 of the metro area has wet roads, and about 1/4 has snowy roads (east metro).  Skies should at least partially clear tonight = Lots of ice around for the morning commute!

Snow Headlines Metro Tonight

Tomorrow we’ll see brief morning clouds then afternoon sunshine.  Expect a very chilly day for late February; highs only in the upper 30s.  That’s due to a much stronger easterly Gorge wind spreading out across the metro area.  Gusts will likely reach 60 mph in the west end of the Gorge.  Brrrr!

Now lets talk snow numbers.  Here are the numbers, a reversal from the system exactly two weeks ago.  Eastside got a trace or nothing (until the dusting this evening), but west of the West Hills finally saw a decent snowfall

Snow Totals Metro Area

Our final forecast yesterday evening was Trace to 2″, so I consider that a pretty good forecast.  But the HUGE forecast achievement was models consistently showing a historic snowstorm in the southern Willamette Valley and into Central Oregon.  Remember yesterday morning’s WRF-GFS?  Not only did it do well in the metro area, but it forecast 12″+ in large parts of Lane and Douglas counties.


The actual numbers…

Snow Totals South Valley Central Oregon

Trees and powerlines are down all over the place down there due to the heavy/wet 32-33 degree snowfall.  Lots of firewood in Lane County for NEXT winter!


The numbers this evening are amazing.  Remember there was one wave of snowfall Saturday night and Sunday morning, then the rest last night through this afternoon.  It was really one long snowstorm.  I remember Madras once getting about 2 feet of snow during the January 1998 storm.  Some big snowfall during the 1992-1993 winter as well.  To see 20-30″ in some of the driest parts of Oregon is a big deal.

Snow Totals South Valley Central Oregon2

What a February!

Chief Meteorologist Mark Nelsen

70 Responses to Historic Snowstorm Central and West-Central Oregon

  1. Heinrich Lippschitz says:

    Metro gets screwed again

  2. Evan -- Cedar Mill says:

    Yup humidity is done to 30-40%. Snow looking unlikely for metro

  3. Evan -- Cedar Mill says:

    Light precip moving close to Albany

  4. Pgiorgio says:

    Looks like a dose of no snow tonight. Trusty models not showing significant qpf.

  5. runrain says:

    East wind is howling, as strong as I’ve seen it in Happy Valley this winter.

  6. rmlounsbury says:

    I wouldn’t get too excited for tonight. Total accumulation on GFS, HRRR, EURO, and NAM through Wednesday morning is .02″ or less through 7am.

    Flurries at best tonight.

  7. Tanis Leach says:

    For the mid valley (Corvallis/Albany). I am currently calling for 1-3 inches. I could see this prediction being raised to 2-5 inches if moisture starts prior to 10 pm or a winter storm warning is issued. Currently 39 but cloudy and reeking of midterm cramming.

  8. Evan -- Cedar Mill says:

    Winter weather advisory posted for valley including metro. Central valley looks like the bullseye. Strong east wind in East metro may limit snow to under an inch.

  9. Roland Derksen says:

    Nothing but clear skies and breezy conditions here- though we might see snowflurries late tomorrow and overnight into Friday. It’s a real toss-up now, which February will be the coldest: 2019 or 1989?

    • Roland Derksen says:

      whoops- I meant possible snow from Wednesday evening to Thursday, not Friday morning. (I’m getting ahead of myself again)

  10. Evan -- Cedar Mill says:

    If only the high clouds had come in a few hours earlier we would have been at 33 everywhere.

  11. Ken in Wood Village says:

    I don’t think our temperatures will move up any further because of the high clouds we are starting to get.

    I looked at Troutdale Airport conditions at 11:53am: Temperature is 38F, DP 19F, Winds: ENE 21mph Gusts: 30mph.

    Crown Point at 12:06: Temperature is 34F Wind Chill: 21F Winds: ESE 29MPH Gusts: 54MPH.

    It could be a interesting night 🙂

  12. boydo3 says:

    Hwy 58 and 126 into Eugene area and hwy 38 southwest to Reedsport are all closed in spots. Thousands without power in what EWEB is calling an unprecedented number of lines and poles down. Hwy 101 between Goldbeach and Brookings in closed due to road failure (washout).
    Check out tripcheck in that area.


  13. Pgiorgio says:

    RIP Blog.

  14. Jason Hougak says:

    21F this morning with the dry powdery snow blowing down the road was very cool. Feels like it’s central Oregon.

  15. Jason Hougak says:

    Central Oregon about to get another 3-8”
    What a great late snow season.

  16. W7ENK says:

    Oops, I forgot to ask: Anyone up in the Longview/Rainier area, how are the roads? I have to drive up that way for work here shortly…

  17. W7ENK says:

    After many, many, many consecutive hours of light snow/snizzle yesterday and last night, woke up to another dusting this morning. This brings my total Winter snowfall up to 1 inch + 4 dustings, which don’t count for anything.

    Temp dropped to 27 degrees overnight, roads in my neighborhood were icy AF. Saw a car sideways, nosed into the curb half way down the hill from my place on my way in to work.

  18. Jason Hougak says:

    Anybody look at the trip check map?
    The McKenzie Hwy is closed in part due to fuel spill east of McKenzie. Mark any info on this? That’s all the McKenzie River needs is a fuel spill. One of Oregon’s most beautiful rivers.

  19. JohnD says:

    So has a concensus been reached yet how tonight’s system will likely perform–e.g. a more northerly course–or mostly south and PDX gets hosed yet again?

    • Ken in Wood Village says:

      I haven’t looked at the models this morning but last night they were trending more North. I also have read what Jake in Gresham posted, things are looking better for us to get some snow. Not sure how much right now.

    • Joshua Lake Oswego says:

      Trace -1”. Areas south of Portland will do better. I don’t see any support for anything >1”. Most of the metro area will be lucky to get a dusting.

  20. Alohabb says:

    Well looks like wraparound moisture is going to give pdx 1-2” tonight. Maybe 3 more in Eugene. If I read this all right.

  21. Tanis Leach says:

    Guess on when winter is going to be forked:
    If euro is better next 14 days: April 3rd
    If GFS is better next 14 days: March 10th

    • Jake in Gresham says:

      Wow. You seeing this? The 06z GFSis running right now and it has improved even more from the 00z. The cold air sits over us with convergence even more favorable all the way into Olympia Washington with Eugene getting the most at about 3 inches….

      Spring is nowhere!

    • PAUL D says:

      Winter should have been forked for Dec-Jan and then unforked for Feb!!

  22. Ken in Wood Village says:

    I’ve been looking at the 00Z EURO and GFS. Depending on which model you look at, we either stay cool to cold or around normal temps for the next 10 days. You pick which model you want…lol 🙂

  23. Ros says:

    I have a hard on

  24. Jason Hougak says:

    Mark need an update on the state snowpack. Bachelor had 42” in 48 hours. Really would have liked Hood to have done better but we need it down there too. This is going to be a big Water year for the entire West Coast. Hopefully we can just forget about summer melting it.

  25. W7ENK says:

    I have friends all over the State, and some of the snow totals I’m hearing from people are absolutely unreal.

    Makes it even more disheartening that Milwaukie got nothing… again.

    • Anonymous says:

      Be happy you live in a unique micro climate and have lived there for a long time.. You just need an attitude adjustment my friend.

      • W7ENK says:

        You know, that’s a lot like telling a starving child in Ethiopia that they just live in a really unique part of the world that lacks water and arable soil, so they should adjust their attitude and instead be happy for their thirst and hunger. ☹️

  26. Evan -- Cedar Mill says:

    Eugene probably gonna get another round of snow. Portland will stay dry again. 😦

    • Jake in Gresham says:

      Not at all. The way the system tomorrow has shifted North could give us more snow Wednesday night into Thursday morning as Eugene transitions over to freezing rain. The latest GFS actually shows it stalling over southern Oregon and wrapping snow shows over the Cascades and into PDX. At least that’s what I’m seeing. Model runs yesterday had it going into the Mount Shasta region of California so this is certainly something to watch!

      • Tanis Leach says:

        Jake, since I don’t know where to get the short range high def models, what does it say for Corvallis?

        • Jason Hougak says:

          Several models to choose from here.
          High resolution models
          HRRR, RAP
          Also NAM and GFS models

        • Jason Hougak says:


          Dang it forgot to add the link.

        • Jake in Gresham says:

          I don’t have access to them either. Just years in the hobby. Others here with decades. 😛

          But honestly envious of the mid Willamette valley right now.

          You guys get this system in the right spot based on the last 2 runs of the GFS, NAM and Euro. Then the dying system coming from the North slides down the coast as it dissipates. Snow and snow.

          Friday night it looks like it all transitions to an Southern onshore and we all warm up pretty quick. But the next few days are an icebox for everyone.

        • Tanis Leach says:

          Thank you all. I have just been using the free version of weather.us but the models are 3hrs behind (updates 1am/pm PST/DT) and only does the 12z and 0z models. I need to start using better sites, or just shell over $89 more in debt so I can get full access to weathermodels.com

        • Jake in Gresham says:

          What Jason Hougak linked is all I have for high resolution. It isn’t bad but not the greatest either. I know Ken in Wood Village has a paid version that is truly high resolution (sorry to put you on the spot! :P) that Mr. Nelson uses (if I’m not mistaken) and I think Rob too.

        • Ken in Wood Village says:

          LOL, thanks Jake…hehe. I actually use


          It only costs $12.99 a month and you get almost everything. Some of the models Mark uses is from a different site (I think WeatherBELL). I did use WeatherBELL for about a month but to me it wasn’t user friendly.

          The 00Z Euro is looking interesting. It wants to give us freezing rain around March 7th. I don’t think we will be done with winter weather anytime soon. I think this year is going to be a spring without warm and dry weather. I think it’s going to be a wet and cold one for this year.

      • Ken in Wood Village says:

        I am looking at the 00Z Euro, it does show the system coming more North now. It looks like the Portland area could get some more snow.

        Tanis: it looks like you could get some freezing rain then maybe more snow. At least that what it looks like on the 00Z Euro.

        Looks like we could have another round of winter weather again 🙂

  27. Jake in Gresham says:

    Interesting, the short range weather models have shifted the system on for tomorrow into Wednesday more North of California. Looks, like the Southern Willamette valley is going to keep that state of emergency.

    Seeing an additional 2 to 6 inches for them (seeing freezing rain as a serious potential issue). Wow, what a late Winter!

    • Jake in Gresham says:

      And farther out a weak system Friday. This Winter weather isn’t going anywhere. Thinking a lot of ice mess morning commutes for PDX the next few days as this will mostly be spotty snow showers for us.

  28. Tanis Leach says:

    More serious round, also testing image posting (thanks Ken)
    This is at Chip Ross park 5 pm at 800 feet.

    #coatsarefornoobs (only reason why I’m posting myself in here)

  29. Jason Hougak says:

    Keep up the updates Mark! A very fun exciting February and really want this to continue into the winters to come. Perhaps a record cold summer…

  30. Matthew Boyd says:

    I think your second snow total graphic should read 31″ for santiam pass (instead of 13″).

  31. Tanis Leach says:


    • Tanis Leach says:

      Well, off by 2 minutes. Oh well. Any update on Wednesday’s potential for at least the south valley

      • Larry says:

        I think the south metro area, PDX, and valleys will get a dusting to and inch of snow Wednesday morning. It will be cold enough for snow to stick, causing possible disruption for the morning commute. However, PDX north, and coastline are unlikely to see snow fall.
        But one thing is for sure; the further the low goes north, the more the snow is gonna keep falling and stick. Any snow that does fall will be likely to melt by the afternoon hours.

  32. boydo3 says:

    Wowzer! I have a son in Creswell and another in Sisters.
    The one is Creswell is without power (an all electric home too).

  33. Ken in Wood Village says:

    Amazing snow fall. Thank you Mark for the update!! First

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