Heavy snow in the mountains through Tuesday

Showers, sunbreaks chance of lowland thunder too

Heavy snow in the mountains through Tuesday
Forecast snow totals through Tues., Feb. 23.

A survey of weather cameras shows a wide range in weather conditions across the area at 4 p.m. There’s snow at Stevens Pass, still mainly rain at Snoqualmie Pass (changing to snow next few hours) and showers and sunbreaks in the lowlands around Puget Sound.

It’s breezy to windy areawide and a Wind Advisory is out for the Admiralty Inlet area into tonight for winds topping 45mph in gusts. Winds will commonly gust 25-35mph elsewhere into tonight.

Through this evening, the heaviest precipitation will be in the southward-sinking Puget Sound convergence zone, presently across north King and south Snohomish counties. Some hail showers are possible with these downpours – particularly east of the I-5 corridor nearer the mountains --- and also for some lightning strikes. We had some lightning in north Snohomish and southern Skagit counties earlier this afternoon but within the precipitation band that’s farther south now, we could still have some lightning strikes through about 7-8 p.m. before instability diminishes.

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In the mountains, snow levels will be falling from around 4,000 feet to about 2,000 feet later this evening with a changeover to snow at Snoqualmie Pass. A Winter Storm Warning is out for the Cascades for 1-2 feet of pass snow through Tuesday with higher totals possible higher up on the volcanoes. The Olympics get into the snow with this too with 6-12 inches at Hurricane Ridge.

To start Tuesday in the lowlands, we’ll still have some showers and sunbreaks. The additional sunshine could give us added instability once again so from late morning through the afternoon into the evening there will be the chance for an isolated hail shower and some lightning strikes. But there will be plenty of drier times too. It’ll remain breezy with highs in the upper 40s in Seattle.

We’ll get a drier break on Wednesday before more rain returns on Thursday with showers Friday into the weekend. Snow levels will fall at times to around 1,000 feet or possibly lower particularly in late night and morning hours. Right now, significant lowland snow doesn’t look likely but in these showery, cool conditions, there could be a dusting mainly on higher hills to start the day. This would be most probable on Thursday and Friday mornings. Otherwise, it’s warm enough for just rain every afternoon.

A shower chance remains in to the weekend but there’s no signal pointing toward any organized weather systems. Highs will remain near normal in the upper 40s and lower 40s and morning lows in the upper 30s and lower 40s.