November 01, 2013

Saturday's Storm

A major storm is approaching the Northwest Coast on Friday night and the latest runs have not reduced the threat.  Here is the latest water vapor satellite image (you are viewing the infrared radiation emitted by water vapor in the atmosphere).  Impressive storm signature, with a good dry slot projecting towards the low center.  That is indicative a rapidly intensifying storm.

 The 10 PM radar image from the coastal radar near Hoquiam shows bands of precipitation, some heavy, moving towards land from off the Pacific.  Rain has been observed over western Washington during the past two hours.

The latest model run predicts the low center will be off our coast at 2 AM:

And then move eastward to our north.  Really impressive pressure gradient along the coast and over western Washington.  Major winds.

 Let me show you the predicted wind gusts.  First, the larger view at 2 AM.  Up to 70 kt gusts just east of the low center.

 Looking at the high-resolution forecasts at the same time, gusts to 50 kts over NW Washington and the northern coast.  NW Washington is a windy place before storms reach the coast.

At 8 AM, the low center is passing over the NE corner of the Olympic Peninsula.  Very strong winsd over Puget Sound and wind reach 60-70 kt along the coast.

But perhaps the most threatening feature occurs later in the morning as the low moves by:  strong westerly winds, gusting to roughly 60 kts, pushes into the Strait.  Serious stuff.  I expect power outages on Whidbey.

 Here is the UW WRF model wind prediction from the Seattle WindWatch website at 2 PM Saturday.  Pretty severe over NW Seattle.

And yes...snow is still expected in the mountains, even in the passes.  The 24h totals ending 4 AM on Sunday are impressive:  1-2 feet in favored locations.
With lots of trees on the trees and plenty of summer growth ready to be "pruned", there should be downed branches and some power outages with this event.  But it is NOT the equal of one of our great windstorms....don't want to overhype this.

Announcement Ivar's Mukilteo Landing restaurant (my favorite weather-themed eating establishment) will have a special dinner and a presentation (by me) to commemorate the tenth anniversary of the on storm that destroyed the restaurant in 2003.  It will take place next Thursday, November 7.  More information here.  Limited to 40 people.

Seattle Residents:   Please consider voting for Sue Peters for School Board. Check out my previous blog for more information. 


  1. The wind just started a few minutes after 8 here in Clearview (east of Mill Creek). Lots of leaves flying and fast moving clouds!

  2. Here in Redmond, the wind is something fierce right now.

  3. Do you have time to post a Nowcast later in the day?


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