Fox News Weather Center

Storm to slam northwestern US with wind, rain and snow through midweek

Topic driven playlist


After a brief lull in wet weather early this week, the West Coast will be hit with another gusty, drenching system on Wednesday.

Coastal winds will pick up early Wednesday morning and will be whipping out of the southwest by midday.

Wind gusts could reach 60 mph along the shore from Eureka, California, to the Olympic Mountains in Washington.

Combined with the drenching rain expected to begin in western Oregon and northern California during the afternoon, strong winds could topple trees and cause sporadic power outages.

NW midweek


Much of northern California has already received a disruptive amount of rain this season, but this area will again be targeted by the heaviest rainfall.

Coastal Oregon, Washington and Vancouver Island can also expect waves of drenching rainfall to begin on Wednesday.

“The lower elevations in western Washington and western Oregon received quite a bit of snow from the last storm,” said AccuWeather Meteorologist Michael Doll.

The threat of localized flooding will again be prevalent with this system, as well as resulting mudslides and rockslides.

“The combination of rain and snow melt will create the threat for flooding along the [Interstate 5] corridor from Portland, Oregon, to Seattle,” said Doll.

Landslides, downed trees and toppled power lines could all cause road closures, particularly in higher elevations.

Those planning to travel along I-5 anywhere north of Sacramento, California; I-84 in Oregon or I-90 in Washington, should plan ahead in case of road closures or flooding.

Sliding earth, downed trees and toppled power lines could all cause road closures, particularly in higher elevations.

Those planning to travel along Interstate 5 anywhere north of Sacramento, California; I-84 in Oregon or I-90 in Washington should plan ahead in case of road closures or flooding.

“It will be cold enough in the Columbia River Gorge and parts of southern Washington for rain to freeze on some surfaces at the onset later Wednesday,” said Doll.

By Wednesday afternoon, flakes will begin to fly over the Cascades in Washington. Snow rates of up to 2 inches per hour can be expected in the mountains.

Snow will stretch from northeastern Oregon to the Bitterroot and Sawtooth mountains of Idaho, through western Montana and into the Yellowstone region of Wyoming by Wednesday evening.

While I-84 through Idaho will only receive spotty precipitation with this event, roads farther north - namely I-90 and I-15 through Idaho and Montana - will be freshly snow coated by Thursday morning.

Around a foot of snow could accumulate on the ridge tops in these areas by Thursday night, adding to the very healthy snow pack already in place throughout the western U.S.

The peaks of the Klamath Range and Sierras in northern California could also receive several inches of snow, though pass levels are expected to receive mostly rain.