Timm: Pineapple Express will yield to nights of nearly freezing

By Patrick Timm, Columbian weather columnist

Published:

 
photoPatrick Timm

As promised here the other day, lots and lots of weather action heading our way for the weather buffs out there.

Heavy rain and high winds will affect mostly Oregon today, but some moderate to heavy rain will cross the Columbia and have Clark County on the soggy and breezy side as well. It's a Pineapple Express, if you will, that began last night. Fortunately for us, though the forecast is anything but dry, the heaviest precipitation is forecast to stay south of the Columbia.

Wednesday, the front moves eastward and we should start to settle down late in the day before much-colder air arrives.

For those of you who suffer from sore joints with inclement weather, keep your pain meds handy. Later in the week, our highs could be barely 10 degrees or so above freezing and lows near freezing anytime the clouds clear. That puts the snow level down below 2,000 feet — maybe even 1,000 feet — but moisture will be limited.

Still, the Cascades will get a nice round of snow after the drenching rains of today pull snow levels up to near 7,000 feet as the day wears on.

Any snowflakes in our future? I doubt it, but if you live in the higher elevations of Clark County don't be surprise to see a wet flake or two — maybe three — later in the week. I will definitely put the liner back in my parka.

Looking ahead, there will continue to be a cold dome of arctic air over the Yukon, and as always we will keep a weather eye on its movement. Most likely it moves southward down the east side of the Rockies, but a sliver of it traverses out over the ocean and then back inland to us by the end of the week.

Placement, timing and moisture content are always critical for low-elevation snowfall. Forecast models keep the cold air quite close the week before Christmas. Maybe Santa could nudge a little down our way for a smooth landing for his sleigh. Stay tuned!

Patrick Timm is a local weather specialist. His column appears Tuesdays, Thursdays and Sundays. Reach him at Weather Systems.