As the cold temperatures continue and the weekend nears the National Weather Service in Seattle is revising their forecasts for snow. Locally it’s looking less likely to see white walls of wonder through your weekend, but you won’t have to drive far to find snow.
A Winter Storm Watch has been issued for interior lowlands of Western Washington From Lewis County northward to the Canadian border and westward along the Strait of Juan de Fuca for the period from Friday through Saturday. Some local areas are mentioned in that watch like Montesano, Elma, and McCleary.
Total snow accumulations of 3 to 5 inches are forecast. Heaviest accumulations are most likely late Friday night into Saturday in the lowlands of Thurston, western Lewis, and far southeast Mason Counties, including Olympia, Centralia, and Toledo, Southwest Mason County and the interior lowlands of Grays Harbor County, including Matlock, McCleary, and Montesano.
They are still expecting some lowland snow to combine with strong winds across Western Washington Friday and Saturday, new models are forecasting 2-3 inches of snow in Seattle, 4-6 in Olympia, 8-12 inches on Hurricane Ridge, but less than an inch along the coast.
A special weather statement has been issued for the cold weather system. Snowfall is likely to peak Saturday morning and could start Friday afternoon with rain along the coast.
The winds are expected to be the strongest further inland tomorrow afternoon through mid-day Saturday as the wind changes direction overnight. Gusts in the 40 MPH-range could be possible along the coast.
Forecasters have confidence that snow/ice that melts during the day will refreeze at night, especially on untreated roads. Widespread snowfall across WA State will lead to statewide travel issues.
Strong Fraser outflow winds in the north interior may lead to power outages and tree damage. Well below normal temperatures continuing for the foreseeable future – this will have increasingly detrimental impacts on the areas homeless population and those without power.
Ground temperatures will begin much cooler with this system, therefore snow will begin to accumulate faster than with the previous storm.