(12/29) One more snowstorm Thursday before the big thaw

Amounts lighter than Christmas weekend

We have one more snow event to get through before we finally thaw out, and that is coming in for early Thursday.

For this evening and into around midnight, we’ll be seeing increasing clouds. There could be some flurries falling out of the thickening cloud bases this evening but this is of no consequence. Up north around Whatcom County, snow will increase around midnight and this area of snow moves south pretty fast. By about 4 a.m., we should see snow around much of the area. There is the chance that parts of the central and south Sound could see snow hold off until a little more toward 6-7am because of some sinking air (snow shadowing) behind the Olympics, but this will fill in eventually, potentially mixed with some rain the farther south you go.

It will be a snowy morning commute for the drivers who have to get out in it. The snow will taper from north to south after sunrise and we could even have some freezing rain or just cold rain south of Olympia for a time Thursday morning. The coast will mainly be in just rain.

By afternoon, expect some clearing in spots, but we’ll have to watch for a Puget Sound Convergence Zone (or several of them) continuing with bands of snow in the central and north Sound. This could help a few spots mainly north and east of Seattle see some additional accumulation later in the day, while the snow has ended for most of the rest of the region.

Amounts look reasonably to be in the 1-3″ range for most lowland locations (thus a Winter Weather Advisory), though once you get north of Everett and toward the Cascades, we’ll have some amounts higher than that. In Whatcom County, six inches or more could fall. A Winter Storm Warning has been issued for western Whatcom County.

In the mountains, 6-12″ of snow can be expected Thursday with nasty pass travel.

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Highs Thursday will pop above freezing for the first time since late Christmas day in spots from Seattle south, a sign that we’re almost done with this deep freeze. But, we’ll have one more day to go as temperatures fall back into the 20s for Friday morning. On Friday, we could have a few lingering flurries but it’ll be dry, partly sunny, with highs in the upper 20s to low 30s. Not much thawing yet, for sure.

A weak weather system moves through Saturday with some early-day light snow (a dusting maybe) quickly turning to lowland rain by afternoon. Temperatures will warm to around 40 degrees from Seattle south and this will start allowing some of the permafrost to thaw, slowly.

Sunday will see mainly a few rain showers moving through with highs in the 40s but we are done with lowland snow concerns for a few days. Expect lowland rain with some mountain snow at times in to next week and perhaps by Tuesday or Wednesday we could see some snow try to mix in at night or morning mainly on the high hills --- if there’s enough moisture to work with.

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