Heavy Mountain Snow and a Winter Storm Warning for Hood Canal

February 28, 2012
12:03 P.M.

Hi everybody! Once again, I’m sorry for the sporadic forecasts, I have a pretty heavy class load this quarter. But I do have about 15 minutes until my next class, so I can write a short blog post here to keep you up to date on the current weather situation.

There has been a lot of talk about snow in the past couple days. It is very hard for Seattle to get snow after mid-February, but last week, folks were talking about the possibility of a major arctic outbreak for Seattle.

That is not going to happen, but snow is not completely out of the forecast. While most of the lowlands (including Seattle) will not see accumulating snow, Hood Canal currently has a winter storm warning from now until 4 A.M. Wednesday for 1-8 inches of snow. That is a pretty wide range, and the highest amounts will be near the Olympics in places like Hoodsport while the lowest amounts will be in places further away from the Olympics, like Shelton. It is very common for Hood Canal to get snow while the rest of Western Washington gets a chilly rain because the cold air by Hood Canal is not as quick to mix out as the air over most places in the lowlands.

Take a look at the 24-hour predicted snowfall over the region until 4 A.M. tomorrow morning.

Valid 04:00 am PST Wed, 29 Feb 2012 – 24hr Fcst – UW 4/3km 12z WRF-GFS 24-hour snowfall
You can see moderate amounts of snow over the Hood Canal region and pretty high amounts over the Olympics. 
Also, take a gander at the surface temperatures predicted at 1 P.M. today, and look how there is a pool of cold air nudged up against Hood Canal.
Valid 01:00 pm PST Tue, 28 Feb 2012 – 9hr Fcst – UW 4/3km 12z WRF-GFS 2-meter temperature
Over the next week, there will be no more lowland snow, but there will be tons of snow in the Cascades with low snow levels to boot. Next weekend, particularly Saturday, should be great for skiing, and I’m definitely looking forward to going up. Here’s one last picture of the 24-hour snowfall predicted Saturday ending at 4 A.M.
Valid 04:00 am PST Sat, 03 Mar 2012 – 96hr Fcst – UW 12km 12z WRF-GFS 24-hour snowfall
As always, thanks for reading, and have a nice day!
Charlie
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