Storm to bring 1-3 inches of snow late Sunday and into Monday

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NASA image from Friday, Febuary 3, 2016, of cold air pouring over the Pacific Ocean from the interior of British Columbia.

Snow, ice or rain? Western Washington is gearing up for a wet and chilly weekend. Depending on where you live could determine what kind of precipitation will fall on Saturday, but all eyes are on a potentially rough start to the week.

Q13 News weathercaster Erin Mayovsky says, “late Sunday an upper-level low will move inland giving most of us the chance for lowland snow through Monday.”

Lewis and Thurston counties are expected to get some snow or rain/snow/sleet mix late Sunday afternoon. By about 9 p.m. that wintery weather could be as far north as Seattle.

“It won’t stick at first, but it could by the evening hours once the sun goes down,” explains Q13 News meteorologist Tim Joyce. “A trace to 3″ are possible in the next 36 hours as snow levels plummet to about 200 feet by midnight.”

Mayovsky warns that “this is the most aggressive snow model” of the several they consult regularly. She says the chance of this “worst case snow scenario” is only about 20-30%.

A winter storm watch is in effect for southwest Washington and Northeast Oregon through Monday. Snow for those areas expected to be heavier while less snow expected for the rest of Washington to the north, east and west.

An avalanche warning still in effect for the western slopes of the Cascades through the rest of the weekend with 1-2 feet falling into Sunday. This means ski areas are fine, but very dangerous conditions in the backcountry areas.  Allow for extra time for mountain pass travel.

A winter storm warning is in effect until 4 p.m. on Saturday for the mountains for Cle Elum, Cliffdell, Trout Lake.

Next week

The cold air and precipitation coming in Sunday evening will hang on through Wednesday allowing snow to fall in the early morning hours on Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday. Mayovsky says the snow, if any, will turn over to rain by midday as temperatures warm.

“Much of the coming week hinges on where/if snow falls and sticks as snow-covered ground can affect what follows,” Mayovsky explains. “Assuming Monday morning is a lot like Friday morning’s event — we’ll still see some decently active winter weather with rain at times and lots more mountain snow. Highs will likely be a tad cooler than the normal of 49 and lows a bit cooler than the normal of 37.”

A warm front will bring warmer more normal conditions for Thursday into Friday.