Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Evening Info

Above is a nice summary of what has happened so far--24h total precipitation from the Seattle Rainwatch web site. You can see the heaviest precipitation was in a band extending from Victoria eastward to Skagit County. Some folks there have gotten 6-12 inches...and even more. Here is a video from one of them this morning:


The other thing that the precipitation summary shows clearly is the profound effects of rainshadowing downstream of the Olympics for a good part of the day.

Quite a bit of snow shower activity now in the central Puget Sound between the northerly and southerly air streams, with a number of areas getting whitened, but very few near the Sound experiencing the kind of totals that were in the forecast. Snow showers have been particularly heavy near Renton--you can see the snow on the roads there:Here is the latest radar. There is still shower activity...but nothing particularly heavy. But it is not over yet....

44 comments:

JERRY G. said...

Cliff, .... You are looking at accumulating totals upwards of 20+" (reported from my father) in Mount Vernon and I have 17" at my house in Sedro-Woolley, with a temp of 27* and nice stiff wind pushing in.

Liembo said...

Forecasting weather around here must be like driving a train while the track is being laid in 10 feet in front of you. (In your last post you said "on track" and this is the metaphor that came to mind).

As frustrating as it is for the public, it must be so much harder as a forecaster delivering the probabilities.

-DC- said...

So... we went from predictions of 1-3", then up to 6" or more, and now back down to 2-4" all within the span of about 12 hrs. Will snow forecasting for Puget Sound ever be reliable?

Jason the Son #1 said...

We have 16-18" here on the ground in Mount Vernon- just measured. It is still coming down too. We had a period between 5-7pm that was pretty intense, I think about 6 inches fell during those two hours.

Avalanche said...

I've been a pessimist all day. But with -42C 500mb temps and convergence, I think the shot of heavy snow could last till noon.

I noticed some echo returns are still southerly trying to make it to Bellingham, so the Sound might be under the gun for the next 12hrs! It could really accumulate.

sschommer said...

It seems the snow bands have really picked up. Here in Duvall we are getting quarter sized flakes and there is no sign of it letting up. Looking at the last 30 min radar loop, the echos are getting denser from about Renton, NE to the county line (Duvall). We are at 2" and quickly climbing. It's 29 degrees and slowly dropping.

Brad said...

Yeah, right. Living in Seattle since 1964, I'm used to the classic 'snow' forecast. In the last five years or so, it appeared that technology had broken through, and accurate forecasts were on the horizon...but it appears that forecasting is the same as it ever was in Seattle. Bottom line: snow in Seattle is rare. Don't plan on it. Forecasts of snow are most often nothing more than wishful thinking, and often a way to buy viewers to TV news and, yes, Cliff's blog. Sadly, despite fancy technology and supposed smart people, nothing has really changed. My school district heeded the warning and canceled school for 30,000 kids...and not a flake fell. Here's the real story: Seattle is too close to the Pacific Ocean for significant snow to fall more than rarely every few years, La Nina or not. Get used to it...I'm tired of the boy who cried wolf.

oneofus said...

After only a couple brief spits during the day, which melted, Newcastle is getting pelted tonight - 4 inches and still coming down.

wanne1 said...

It finally started snowing on south Vashon Island around 8pm. We have a couple of inches so far.

wanne1 said...

It started snowing on south Vashon Island at 8pm. We have a couple of inches so far.

snapdragon said...

You lucky dogs.
So far, SW WA has nothing.
Nada.
Nicht.
Zero.
Zip.
Zilch.
Well, three small wet flakes landed on my windshield 10 minutes ago, but that was it.
Boo.

Michael said...

3+ Inches just SW of SEATAC and still coming down at a moderate clip. Im only at 128' above sea level.

Brad said...

I've lived here since 1964, and I don't know why I'm surprised by this latest 'event'. It had seemed that forecasting technology had evolved to the point of being fairly accurate and reliable...But I don't think that anymore after this winter. Here's the bottom line: Seattle is too close to the Pacific Ocean for anything but fairly rare snow events. And, like I remember in my childhood, for every 10 snow forecasts, count on maybe one coming through. Technology or not, it's the same as it ever was. Forecasts for snow are more about buying viewers for local TV stations, and, yes, Cliff Mass. My school district heeded the forecast and canceled school for 30,000 kids and their families, yet nary a flake fell! I'm tired of the boy who cried wolf.

dave said...

Brad,I feel you,but hopefully those will be your famous last words?
praying for snow,QA/Magnolia/Ballard is currently dry as a bone,fingers crossed

Ben said...

Still not much in central Seattle. Maybe a 1/4 of an inch about 3 hours ago. Stopped snowing since.

Ben said...

Still nothing really in Capital Hill. Maybe a 1/4 inch on grass, stopped snowing about 3 hours ago.

Zathras said...

Brad, you're right, snow is rare in Seattle proper. But snow amounts were heavier than forecast in some areas to the north, but the city had downslope much of the day. That is probably the number one way to spoil a snow forecast in Seattle, to have a hole behind the Olympics. In SW flow, Sequim is in the dry area, but west flow sometimes Puget Sound is dry--but it isn't reliably dry like Sequim.

This evening Sea-Tac has been getting snow and reported 2" at 10pm, so that is something. North of town so far, just a skiff as far as I can tell. It may yet snow an inch or two in places that have not had much yet--even til midday Thursday there is snow showers here and there in the UW model:
http://www.atmos.washington.edu/~ovens/loops/wxloop.cgi?mm5d3_ww_snow3+///3

Gordon said...

Almost 10:30 in Kirkland by the lake, and only a little dusting. Roads are bare.

I see that East and South King County apear to be getting significant snow.

superdeluxe said...

Looks Central King County is getting hammered right now (Kent/Renton/Seatac/Tukwila)

JewelyaZ said...

3.5" on the ground now in Bellevue, elevation 210', just up the hill west of Lake Sammamish. It's still coming down, too. Maybe we will get 4-6" overnight after all.

LSC-L said...

Southeast Bellevue (119th Ave SE, just SW of Factoria)-- up to 2" now and still coming down. Just beautiful! The road surface is somewhat slushy, but with tracks where cars have gone by...

JayNorth said...

Light to moderate snow in Bellingham since about 7PM - an inch and change on the ground and starting to blow around pretty good. Cold!

Brad - last time I was there Victoria was even closer to the Pacific Ocean than Seattle and they have over a foot on the ground. So much for that theory.

DeAnne said...

Coming down in Lakewood. The fluff is about 2 inches. Just 2 miles South of Tacoma. 31F

snapdragon said...

Update from Hazel Dell in SW WA- we had pretty steady snow from about 10:15 to 10:50. Probably a half-inch on the ground. Windy, too.
It's really tapered off, but it could pick up again. I guess I can finally allow myself to hope that we won't have school tomorrow!

mackro said...

Brad, why do I get a feeling that if this event was like the December 2008 event, alongside the lack of preparation that accompanied it, that you would be the first to complain about how unprepared Seattle was for a snow forecast?

Anyway, a slightly heavier dusting of snow in the Greenwood neighborhood as of now, and nothing more. I think the one night of snow in mid January was more significant than this.

Which is interesting, especially since the snow amounts apparently go WAY up really quickly just north of here.

That said, I'm GLAD the forecasters exaggerate the snow chances. Better to be overprepared than underprepared.

Colleen said...

I'm stunned that Skagit received such a beautiful bounty of snow. We ended up with absolutely NOTHING up here on the Canadian border ~ save for the ongoing misery that is the northeaster, of course. Nothing like an endless, cold, beating wind to drive you certifiably crazy.

Cheryl said...

Finally snowing at my house in West Seattle (Fauntlee Hills). Started around 8pm & it is still falling at 11:30pm. Approx 2" so far. As much as my MN born/raised BF (& who also works in Snoqualamie, where they've had snow for 2+ days now) will hate me for saying this, I hope it's still snowing by morning. The little kid in me loves snow. Thanks Cliff for all the updates! I can go to bed happy now.
:)

Pen said...

5 miles ESE of North Bend@700' - At least another inch+ has fallen in the last hour and still coming down....might just get that 3-5" tonight after all. Will be interesting to see what happens over night. I'm off to bed.

KalmTak said...

2 inches in north mercer island at 00:19 AM on 2/24 (thursday)

Megan said...

4 inches and still falling strong here in Issaquah just up the hill on 56th St. WEEE!!

Ramblin said...

Cliff, Thank you so much for the updates along the way. Absolutely beautiful snow fall.

Wx Enthusiast said...

Just under 6 inches on the ground in Newcastle early this morning.

Targhee said...

About 5 inches decent snow (couldn't make snowball) here in North Tacoma. Water equivalent 0.48 inchess. Made for a nice XC ski around UPS campus and streets at 6am.

superdeluxe said...

Roads in King County are pretty much screwed up..compact snow and ice. even I-5 has a ton of snow/slush starting at around 272nd and all the way north past Southcenter Hill.

Michael said...

More terrible snowfall measuring at Seatc Airport. There is 4" on the ground easily. IF Seatac is going to report snow totals they are going to need to do it the correct way: by using a snow board or some equivalent measuring area. Going out and sticking a ruler on the pavement is NOT the way you measure snowfall!
Frustrating...
From the Surface Weather Observing handbook:

The measurement should
reflect the average depth on the ground at the
usual measurement site (not disturbed by human
activities). Measurements from rooftops, paved
areas, and the like should not be made.

Any wood/metal/plastic surface in this area shows about 3.8" at my house right next to the puget sound.

The snow totals in 2008 were not accurate at Seatac either. This is very unfortunate.

epjmcginley said...

Plenty of snow @ Mud Bay west of Olympia, and still falling.

Michael said...

latest METAR has 3" at Seatac, Thats much better...

Bob said...

9AM Thursday Olympia, about 4" accumulation and still snowing. 'Don't know how long it will last, but NWS radar loop now shows rotating circulation with a center over Hood Canal. Winds are from the West in Portland, from the South in Puget Sound, and from the East in the Strait! Right now, it looks like we're in the eye of a very large tornado full of snow!

Dude Diligence said...

Wow! A whole quarter inch of snow at my house in Edmonds.

Pen said...

5 miles ESE of North Bend@700' - Woke up to another 5" this AM and beautiful sunny day. Clouding over again and NWS says we can still expect another 1-3" before 4PM. Right now we have a total accumulation of just over 13". Nothing compared to some of you, but we're loving it!

TVN said...

That system down south is really stuck, isn't it? I keep waiting for it to come north and give us some more snow but no go. And it's 38 degrees so would it really still be snow??

Sarah said...

Snowing again on Capitol Hill...

johnnybregar said...

People!!!!

Those of you whining about the inaccuracy of the forecasts, please zip it. I personally love the information that Cliff provides and I also know (as do you) that the NW is tough to nail. If you want Cliff to drop this blog and leave us with the alternatives - then keep it up. At least he tries hard, backs up his predictions, gives us historical context, provides meaningful data, keeps up with the blog while he is doing a million other things....

I would just recommend that we support him rather that dis him, even if - God forbid - he is not 100% right 100% of the time.

max said...

Sorry for the music, but here's how it was on Cape George (near Port Townsend) yesterday.