Weather Eye: Yes, those were thunderstorms, not Fourth of July fireworks




It was almost like the Fourth of July came early, with all the fireworks in the skies above us Monday. Numerous thunderstorms rolled through bringing cloud-to-cloud lightning and cloud-to-ground lightning strikes.

Hail the size of nickels was reported here and there with the torrential downpours. Temperatures fell to 50 degrees under some of these cells, and driving was almost impossible in the severely reduced visibility. There were also power outages, perhaps caused by the lightning in the Camas-Washougal area, about the time many residents were sliding dinner into the oven.

Blame it on a typical cold springtime air mass. Technically, it is still spring, as summer begins Saturday according to the calendar. I know, I wrote a week ago about this week being nice and warm. Forecast models indicate it again for next week. Maybe it will come to fruition.

As of 5 p.m. Monday, I measured 0.54 inch of precipitation. I had reports near Camas of nearly an inch. Officially at Pearson, Vancouver tallied 1/3 inch.

We will dry out some today (still a chance for showers) and Wednesday before another trough of low pressure slides down the coast. It may not bring much in rainfall, but we said that about the weekend storm, didn’t we?

The weekend appears dry, as does most of next week.

While writing this column Monday afternoon, I turned on my heat — and the lights in my office as yet another dark cloud covered my house. My rain gauge now says, “It is raining cats and dogs.” Total rainfall as of 6 p.m. was 3/4 inch. Wet? Yes.

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