Weather Eye: October has been a wet one

By Patrick Timm, Columbian weather columnist

Published:

 
photoPatrick Timm

Today, we transition from a cold, upper-level trough of low pressure to a warmer ridge of high pressure. It won't stay dry for too long as rain will follow this brief dry spell. Freezing levels will be higher during the weekend and into next week, so much of the snow that fell below 6,000-8,000 feet will melt. After all, it is early in the season.

And you thought it was dry? Yes, we had a good stretch of dry weather in August and September, and even into the first part of October. But recent rains have pushed rainfall totals well over what is usually expected for the entire month, and the month isn't over yet.

By Wednesday afternoon, more than 3.5 inches of rain fell in Vancouver in October, and with more storms heading our way, it could be at 5 inches by 11:59 p.m. on Halloween. This month might end up being the wettest October in at least 15 years or so.

Snowfall amounts were decent at the higher ski areas, with 18 to 24 inches. It has been said that if ski areas can open by Thanksgiving, that is a good year. Thanksgiving comes early this year, on Nov. 22, so we will see if we can get a few more episodes of snow in the Cascades by then.

The hurricane season in the Caribbean wasn't as robust as forecast, but a late-season hurricane, Sandy, hit Jamaica on Wednesday, with winds gusts of 80 mph. Sandy might meander northward and bring inclement weather to the East Coast by next week.

Someone asked me about a Halloween evening weather forecast. Goodness, that is a way out there. If I were trick-or-treating that night, I would be prepared for cool conditions and possible showers.

If you want to rake the leaves, do it today. See you Sunday!

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