Plenty of mountain snow on the way, some mixing in lowlands

Hail and thunderstorms possible in the afternoons
Published: Mar. 23, 2023 at 4:20 PM PDT
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PORTLAND Ore. (KPTV) - A cold front passed over the region at midday, bringing a period of steady rain. This marked the leading edge of a colder airmass that will be with us through early Sunday.

During the next two days this setup will bring the on/off showers weather pattern we often see in spring in the western valleys of Oregon and southwest Washington. Expect a mixture of sun and showers the next three days, with the heaviest showers tomorrow and Saturday. Since the sun is pretty strong this time of year, there is more lifting in the atmosphere. So a thunderstorm or hail shower could be included. That means you may be outside with sunshine one minute, then 10 minutes later it’s hailing with a rumble of thunder. Then 10 minutes later it may be sunny again!

It’s quite a chilly airmass for late March and this will bring lots of snow to the Cascades and Coast Range, plus sticking snow in the overnight hours down to around 1,000′ or so. That said, IF a heavy shower passes over your home (even at sea level) during the late night or early morning hours, snow could briefly stick even there. But any “real” snowfall should remain in the higher hills the next 3 nights. There are no advisories/warnings for any lower elevations.

All those showers will be piling up against the Coast Range and Cascades, producing quite a bit more snow there. We expect 5-8″ through tomorrow evening on the Coast Range summits (most at night), and 10-15″ in the Cascades. More snow falls Friday night and Saturday in both locations. Because of this, the National Weather Service has a Winter Storm Warning up for those areas.

Showers end later Sunday and we’re back to mainly dry weather for Oregon’s Spring Break the first part of next week. A very wet system heads into California during this time, leaving us with more sunshine and warmer temperatures.