According to local weather guru and holder of most-awesome name, Cliff Mass predicts that we could be in for an awesome weather weekend here in the Pacific Northwest. With wind, rain and snow in the mountains, our unseasonably dry 2013 looks to finally be behind us. The rain has returned for the next week or so, but the weather for the weekend looks downright entertaining.
With a Seahawks Playoff game being played in Seattle, what better way to welcome in the New Orleans Saints than with a bunch of rain and wind. While the weather in the lowlands does impact the game and hiking, the true action is in the mountains, where the snow has already started. According to Mount Baker, they received over 20 inches of powder in the last 24 hours. This is great news for anyone who enjoys snow sports! The Cascades are getting dumped on and by the end of this storm, they could see over 2 more feet falling.
For us here on the Olympic Peninsula, we have had a no real snow all winter, so the following sentences bring joy to my heart. By Sunday, January 12th, the Olympic Mountains could see up to 4 FEET of snow. That means Hurricane Ridge Ski and Snowboarding will open and snowshoeing will be able to happen. While the snow level may not be low enough to get snow on Lena Lake or along the Hoh River, it will be great anywhere above 4,000ft. Rumors are that it will drop to about 2500ft for a few hours, but I wouldn’t count on it. If you plan on hiking in the snow areas, please use extreme caution, be prepared and leave a detailed itinerary for friends and family.
For us below the magic snow line, expect rain. It will probably be heavy at times, but that should stop you from going out and hiking. The rivers will have a ton of water and the waterfalls of the Olympic Peninsula will be flowing with awesome power. Flooding is not expected to be serious, but be aware that water can and will rise quite fast. The main concern this weekend will be wind. First, if you are crossing over the mountains, blizzard conditions may occur so be extremely careful. At about 1pm on Saturday, heavy winds are expected to batter the Puget Sound Area, so plan accordingly.
We are stoked for snow in the mountains and rain in the lowlands. This weekend looks to be the return of normal, so get your snowshoes ready, find your rain gear and start planning outdoor activities!
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