First Snow, Now Cold!

Looks like the areas that picked up the most snow today were in a line from about Hockinson down through Camas, then Corbett and Sandy. As much as 7″ was reported in Sandy and about 4″ on Livingston Mountain. Speaking of which, that is exactly where I spent most of the morning and early afternoon with my cousin and his daughter, along with my son. We enjoyed a good old fashion snowball fight. Here is a photo that Mike took at about the 1,300ft level. Plenty of snow up there today. If you have any good photos to share, please post links here. We would love to see them.

I was just thinking to myself that this is now the 4th Christmas holiday in a row that we have seen very low snow levels in the metro area. Let’s see:

Dec 25th 2007 – Snow down to 300ft locally.

Dec 20th-25th 2008 – Megastorm 2008! 10-20″ locally.

Dec 29th 2009 – Sneaker snowstorm! 2-4″ locally.

Dec 29th 2010 – More low elevation snow.

So, what comes next? Cold! Daytime highs will be in the upper 30’s with overnight lows in the 20’s. By this weekend we could see some areas getting down into the upper teens. The east winds will be increasing in the gorge as well, which will help to bring in additional cold air. I was just looking over the latest 0z GFS model data and it likes the idea of keeping us in a general pattern where we would see low snow levels for the next 10+ days. That will be interesting to keep our eyes on. What do some of you think about the overall pattern that the GFS wants to toss at us? Finally, I plan to post something interesting tomorrow regarding rainfall stats. Stay tuned for that! Feel free to post overnight low temps here over the coming few nights so we can compare them.

Stay tuned!


Steve Pierce

Steve Pierce

Steve Pierce is widely known as Oregon and Washington's "go-to-guy" when it comes to fast, accurate historical meteorological research and forecasts. Steve is currently the President of the Oregon Chapter of the American Meteorological Society (AMS). Steve is also recognized as a regional weather commentator and blogger who can be heard on local radio stations and seen in print media outlets across the Pacific Northwest. His Weather Blog is hosted by the Columbian Newspaper in Vancouver. Check it out! He is a third generation resident of Vancouver, Washington and holds a degree in Communications. Both sets of Steve's grandparents migrated to Vancouver during World War II. One set traveled from Lenox, Iowa to work in the Kaiser Shipyards supporting the war effort. The other set came to Vancouver from Olympia, Washington to work as educators for the rapidly expanding Vancouver School District. When the war was over, both sets of grandparents decided to stay in Vancouver and continue raising their families, as did thousands of other families at the time. Those who are most familiar with Steve can attest to the fact that weather is his true passion. His love for "all things weather" began at the age of 7 when Mt. St. Helens erupted in 1980. He was fascinated with which direction the ash plumes were headed. Then came the very powerful windstorm of Friday, November 13, 1981, also referred to as the "Friday the 13th" storm. This was the strongest storm to hit the Portland / Vancouver area since the great Columbus Day Storm of 1962! At age 11, he was asked to publish an extended weather forecast for his elementary school's weekly newsletter. In the 1980's, at age 14, Steve was the youngest of KGW-TV's local "weather watchers" and would phone in his daily Vancouver weather stats to then television meteorologist Jim Little for use on-air. Steve has lived through all of the major Pacific Northwest weather events of the past 30 years, and then some. The most notable events include; the bitterly cold winter of 1978-1979, the record setting snow storms of January 1980, the summer heat wave of August 1981, the windstorms of November 1981 and December 1995, the severe arctic blast of February 1989, the record flood of February 1996, the historic ice storm of January 2004, the Vancouver tornado of January 2008 and the record setting snow storm of Christmas 2008. Not to mention every Mt. St. Helens volcanic eruption in between. With access to the most extensive set of historical weather records available to date, Steve has personally designed and integrated a proprietary system that gives him the ability to quickly locate and manipulate weather data as far back as the 1800's. As one local Meteorologist put it, "Steve has fast access to historical weather data that is needed for media, agriculture, business, personal, historical and other climatological needs. He can quickly manipulate the data in many different ways. His forecasts are also quite accurate, especially at longer lead times." Steve also provides local storm assessments, narratives and weather presentations to the general public, as requested. In his spare time, Steve enjoys spending time with his family, the outdoors, vacationing at his family's coastal cabin and just relaxing! By the way, do you like your weather on the "extreme" side? So does Steve! Whether it is collecting damage assessment data & photos after record setting 125 mph winds at the coast in December 2007, being one of the first on the scene after the January 2008 Vancouver tornado, or feeling (literally) the awesome power of 100 mph wind gusts at Oregon's Crown Point in January 2010, Steve has experienced it all! As Steve says, "don't just love weather, live weather!" Check out Steve's personal weather website at:

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