Brief burst of snow expected Tuesday

Minor accumulations possible, especially north

Brief burst of snow expected Tuesday
Snowfall late Tuesday morning into early afternoon will be brief, but some minor accumulations are possible, especially in Whatcom and Skagit counties. (KIRO 7)

A brief break from the action tonight into Tuesday morning as we're between weather systems. However, as we've seen during the day Monday any light showers will probably have some wet snow or ice pellets mixed in. There won't be any accumulation of note and we'll have these showers dwindling through the evening into tonight.

Tuesday will start dry most areas but late in the morning, increasing precipitation will arrive, followed shortly thereafter by warmer air. Still, we can expect some wet snow even to sea level late Tuesday morning through early Tuesday afternoon.

The best chance for a few inches accumulation -- mainly on grassy surfaces -- will be from about Seattle north, with the chances for accumulation increasing the farther north one goes. These northern locations like Bellingham and Mount Vernon will also hold onto snow as the predominant precipitation type longer than other locations.

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Expected snow accumulation range late Tuesday morning through Tuesday afternoon:

  • Whatcom/Skagit Counties: Up to 3"
  • Elsewhere: 1″ or less with most areas around Seattle south receiving no snow accumulation

Given the warm ground, travel impacts should be minimal and even if we have some whitening of roads in spots late Tuesday morning into the afternoon, it won't last long as temperatures will be warming and the precipitation turns to rain in the lower elevations in the afternoon.

In the mountains, the snow levels will be rising quickly but the passes will get a few inches of snow Tuesday afternoon and evening with a Winter Weather Advisory in effect for locations around and above 4,000 feet in the Cascades late Tuesday through Wednesday morning. Areas above Stevens Pass could get an average of 8-11 inches of snow.

After the burst of snow, more rain!

After this flirtation with lowland snow Tuesday, it'll be warmer with all rain the lowlands the remainder of the work week. We can expect one to three inches of rain for most locations with more than six inches through Friday in some mountain locations with a snow level above 4,000 feet. While this is a lot of rain in those locations, the snow levels will not be as high as they were during the last soggy stretch so river flooding should reach moderate flood stage only on our rivers later this week, with the Snoqualmie, Skykomish, Skagit and Skokomish probably those of greatest concern -- or at least the river systems where we'll see continued issue. But major flooding isn't expected.

We'll dry things out over the weekend but a few showers will remain -- especially on Saturday.

Early indications are for a drier stretch of weather next week but colder than normal. If we do have any bouts of light precipitation during that time, snowfall could be an issue.