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Fox News Weather Center

Seattle, Portland: St. Patrick's Day may be first rain-free day since late February

A change in the weather pattern will bring the first rain-free stretch of weather to the northwestern United States since late February later in the new week.

While storms will continue to track into the Northwest early in the new week, the jet stream will build northward at midweek and cut off the episodes of rain, mountain snow and gusty winds.

"High pressure will then build over the West, allowing drier weather for a while," AccuWeather Meteorologist Maggie Samuhel said.

The lack of rain is not what those in Southern California want to hear but is welcome by the rain-weary Northwest.

"Thursday (St. Patrick's Day) should be the first time Seattle and Portland, Oregon, see a dry day since Feb. 25," AccuWeather Meteorologist Renee Duff said.

Seattle has already received nearly all of March's typical rainfall in the first 11 days of the month.

Sunshine and milder air will win out in many places for the second half of the week. Residents will have easier commutes to and from work, can leave umbrellas at home and will finally be able to get out and enjoy the weather like those in the eastern U.S. have been doing.

Swollen streams and rivers will have an opportunity to recede, while the ground will be able to dry out.

Skiers and snowboarders will have no trouble getting to the slopes to take advantage of the fresh powder. Sunglasses will just be a necessity and the top layer of the snow may become slushy.

Northwest Short-Range Regional Weather Forecast

High pressure, however, may not lead to sunshine and mild air for all of the Northwest.

Underneath the high, moisture can get trapped in the valleys and could set the stage for low clouds and fog to form. The resultant poor visibility could create hazards for motorists and lead to flight delays.

Where the clouds and fog hold stubbornly, there will be little sunshine and temperatures will struggle to rise.

The dry spell will likely not last into the first day of spring (Sunday, March 20) with the high set to give way to more storms next weekend.