The National Weather Service issued a winter storm watch for Wednesday in the Western Columbia River Gorge, which includes the city of Hood River — news that does bode well for the search efforts to find two missing hikers on Mount Hood.

Rescue teams Tuesday reported being helped by clear blue skies, unlimited visibility and calm winds, but the new storm system is expected to change all that and could drop up to three inches in the Mound Hood area.

Precipitation with a warm front will overrun a very cold air mass in the Columbia River Gorge and produce a mix of snow and freezing rain.

The system is expected to move into the area early in the morning and bring a mix of snow and freezing rain to the Columbia River Gorge.

The winter storm watch will remain in effect from Wednesday morning through late Wednesday night.

Other areas in the watch for tomorrow include Multnomah Falls and Stevenson and Skamania Washington.