Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Pendleton, OR

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FXUS66 KPDT 180357

Area Forecast Discussion
National Weather Service Pendleton OR
757 PM PST Wed Jan 17 2018

.SHORT TERM...Tonight and Thursday...An upper level trough in the
eastern Pacific with a closed low off the coast of Canada will
slowly move eastward over the next 24 hours. This will push a cold
front across the forecast area. Currently the front stretches from
northeast Washington back to western Oregon and will be exiting the
forecast area late Thursday. The front will slowly move a band of
precipitation eastward with initial snow levels at 7000 feet. Snow
levels will lower behind the front late Thursday to around 2000 feet
but. However, limited precipitation behind the front in the colder
air means no significant snow accumulations. Main impact of the
front will be the rainfall and the windy conditions ahead of the
front. Wind advisories have been issued for some zones through


.PREV DISCUSSION... /issued 306 PM PST Wed Jan 17 2018/

SHORT TERM...Tonight through Saturday. A deep upper low centered
near 48N/135W will track east-northeast toward northern B.C.
tonight. The low will force a strong cold front east of the Cascades
tomorrow. Surface winds ahead of the front are gusting to 45-50 mph
in the southern Grande Ronde Valley, and a wind advisory was issued
earlier for this area in effect until 8 AM Thurs morning. Gusts to
35-45 mph will continue in the northern Grande Ronde Valley and just
along the base of the OR Blue Mountain Foothills east of Milton-
Freewater and Pendleton tonight, and these winds are just shy of
advisory criteria.

The cold front is well organized, and QPF amounts of 0.25-0.6 inch
are forecast for most of the area ahead of the front. Snow levels
will also lower significantly behind the front. Snow levels will
range from 4500-5500 feet early Thursday morning lowering to 2500-
3500 feet behind the front Thursday afternoon and evening.  The
front will approach the eastern slopes of the WA/OR Cascades around
sunrise, across the Basin and the Columbia Deschutes Plateau during
the morning, then across the remainder of the forecast area during
the afternoon. Despite the cold air and lowering snow levels,
precipitation will taper off behind the front.  From Thursday night
through Friday morning, precipitation will mainly be orographic
mountain snow showers with around 1-3 inches of accumulation in the
populated mountain areas and around 5-10 inches over the highest
peaks of the Elkhorns, Wallowa Mountains, and the Strawberry

From Friday through Saturday, there will be two weak shortwave
troughs bringing scattered snow showers over the mountains and
isolated snow showers elsewhere. Elevations below 2500 feet will see
light rain or light rain/snow mix. Precipitation amounts will be
light with only 1-3 inches of new snow possible in the mountains
with each shortwave. Afternoon temperatures during this time will be
in the 30s over the mountains and 40s in the lower elevations which
is near average for this time of the year.  Wister

LONG TERM...Saturday night through Thursday morning...An active
weather pattern continues as a series of waves around the low in the
Gulf of Alaska continue to move through the region. At the outset of
the period weak ridging in the trough-ridge-trough pattern will be
over the region. This will quickly move off to the east ahead of the
first impulse associated with the aforementioned Gulf of Alaska low
entering the area during the day on Sunday. Precipitation will taper
off during the day on Monday as transient ridging builds back in for
Monday night/Tuesday with the next significant shot of energy
entering the region late Tuesday night/Wednesday morning. Snow
levels during the periods of heaviest precipitation associated with
each warm front will be 3000-4000 feet, falling to around 2500 feet
with passage of the cold front with each system. Both systems should
result in some helpful additions to the mountain snowpack, but will
also include impacts to those transiting the passes. Temperatures
will be near to slightly above period through the extended. Breezy
conditions will be possible late Sunday night/Monday morning as
trough crosses local maximum of 850mb winds along the Columbia
River, but given timing with convective mixing at a minimum may be
more of a localized threat for downslope favored areas and
ridgetops. 74

AVIATION...00Z TAFs...At this hour there is still a little patchy
stratus/light fog in the lower Columbia Basin and Yakima valley and
this may continue to drift in and out of PSC/YKM through early
evening. A cold front moving through the region beginning late this
evening will bring precipitation and MVFR/low VFR ceilings to the
terminals. Cig will rise to 5000-10000ft behind the front in the
afternoon. Winds will be generally less than 10KTs except in central
Oregon where a few gusts into the 20s this afternoon will slowly
weaken into the evening and in the immediate vicinity of the
northern Blue Mountains where winds will gust 25-35KTs with
downslope enhanced winds primarily affecting ALW. 74


PDT  46  49  35  46 /  40  90  30  10
ALW  48  50  36  47 /  40  90  30  10
PSC  39  51  35  47 /  90  60  10  10
YKM  38  49  31  44 /  90  20  10  10
HRI  43  51  35  48 /  80  80  10  10
ELN  34  45  28  40 / 100  20  10  20
RDM  45  46  27  42 /  80  60  30  20
LGD  44  46  32  42 /  20  90  60  40
GCD  44  46  29  40 /  10  90  60  30
DLS  41  51  35  47 / 100  40  30  30


OR...Wind Advisory until 4 AM PST Thursday for ORZ507.

     Wind Advisory until 8 AM PST Thursday for ORZ049.



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