A little snow returns to parts of Western Washington

A little snow returns to parts of Western Washington
Photo: WSDOT
SEATTLE -- While certainly not to the scale of the snow storms of December, a few spots around Western Washington got another little taste of snow Tuesday morning.

A weak system moved in from the northwest, and while normally this would just bring our old fashioned Seattle rain, there was enough cold and dry air lingering from our chilly night that it began as snow for many areas.

As usual with our complex topography, the snow will vary quite a bit around the region. A Winter Weather Advisory is in effect until noon for the far North Interior areas (such as Skagit and Whatcom County), the western Kitsap/Hood Canal area, Cascade foothills and the southwestern Washington interior.

So far Tuesday, several areas in these spots were nearing 1-2" of accumulation and that's about where we expect them to stay.

For all other areas, including the greater Seattle-Tacoma-Everett metro areas, we are just expecting a Trace to 1" with many areas -- especially western King County -- likely remaining bare through the day. That's due to the Olympic Rain Shadow, which is blocking most of the moisture from falling in the main King County metro areas.

We also have a breezy south wind across the area which will work to scour out the cold air near the ground and provide a change to rain by late morning. Some of those winds have been quite gusty reaching 47 mph in Oak Harbor, 41 mph at Alki Beach, 40 mph at Magnolia and 34 mph in Everett.

The snow is still on track to gradually change to rain as we get into the late morning and midday hours. A brief period of sleet and freezing rain is possible during the transition, and both Boeing Field and Sea-Tac Airport were reporting a little freezing rain at 10 a.m.

A second very weak pulse of moisture will move through in the late morning to midday hours, then we'll begin to dry from the north. Any leftover showers should be rain anyway as we warm to near 40.

A Puget Sound Convergence Zone is still possible to form this afternoon in the greater Everett area, but areas near Puget Sound should be warm enough that this is rain. There is a chance of more snow above 1,000 feet as you head into eastern Snohomish County foothills.

Once this cold air is scoured out, it'll end all lowland snow threats for the next several days as temperatures are expected to remain above freezing, even at night.

However, skiers will be happy as the Cascades will continue to get snow into Wednesday. A Winter Weather Advisory is in effect there through 4 a.m. Wednesday. The mountains are expecting about 4-8" of snow Tuesday, and then another 2-4" Tuesday night into Wednesday morning.