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FEATURE NEWS

A WHITE XMAS
FOR THE SKY VALLEY!

December 25, 2008




A Sky Valley home decorated for the holidays amidst plenty of snow for a white Christmas this year.
(SKY VALLEY) -- Here we are on Christmas Eve day and it is indeed a white Christmas in the Sky Valley but a much whiter Christmas than many people had hoped for.

The back-to-back winter snowstorms that have hit the Sky Valley and other parts of the state with record snowfall, wind and cold temperatures have trapped thousands of holiday travelers at Sea-Tac airport as flight after flight was cancelled and many valley residents who are without a car or 4-wheel drive that can get around in all this white stuff are essentially shut in for a few days due to the snow.

The storm also delayed the delivery of millions of holiday gift packages as companies such as Federal Express, UPS and the U.S. Post office struggle to meet all delivery dates on icy, snow packed roadways.

If you are traveling over the mountain passes today or tonight be advised that traction tires are advised on Highway 2 at Stevens Pass and Interstate 90 at Snoqualmie Pass as both roadways are covered with compact snow and ice. Another 5 to 10 inches of snow may fall today in the mountain passes and along the west slopes of the central Cascade mountain range.

The Nat’l Weather Service still has a Winter Weather Advisory in effect until 4:00 p.m. today for The Lowlands of western Washington from Lewis County northward.

SNOW WILL CONTINUE

Snow showers will continue over the western Washington lowlands from Lewis County northward tonight and on Christmas day. The snow showers may be mixed with rain at times this evening and again on Thursday afternoon. Additional accumulations of up to 2 inches can be expected tonight with up to two inches expected again on Christmas day.

Computer models suggest that a heavier band of snow showers could set up over the southwest interior or possibly central Puget Sound on Christmas day. It is uncertain where or if this band will develop but if it does localized snow accumulations could
reach 6 inches.

A Winter Weather Advisory for snow means that periods of snow will cause primarily travel difficulties. Be prepared for snow covered roads and limited visibilities and use caution while driving.

The weather service also says local urban and small stream flooding is possible by Friday as warmer weather returns.

On Friday and Saturday the Sky Valley and most of Western Washington will make a rapid transition back to our normal weather for this time of year, rain with highs in the lower to mid 40s. This change to warmer wetter weather will be a messy one with a couple of unusual hazards for this area cropping up.

Rain added to the melting snow pack over The Lowlands Friday and Saturday may produce urban and small stream flooding in some areas. Snow clogged drains may cause back ups of standing water on roadways and in low spots. The flooded areas can cause travel problems and may become deep enough in some areas to stall cars.

Another problem is that snow on roofs - particularly flat roofs - will initially soak up the rain adding weight and putting additional stress on the structure. Some warming has already taken place with temperatures in the 30s in many areas Wednesday afternoon, thus the snow pack has already begun melting.

However below freezing temperatures tonight followed by temperatures in the 30s again on Christmas day will slow the melting process, producing only localized pooling of
water. Snow showers are expected tonight and on Christmas day may
occasionally mixed with rain.

Below is a more detailed forecast for each area in the Sky Valley:

MONROE WX: Snow showers occasionally mixed with rain this evening. Snow accumulation up to 2 inches. Lows near 30. Southeast wind 10 to 20 mph. On Xmas day Snow showers. Snow accumulation up to 2 inches. Total snow accumulation up to 4 inches. Highs in the mid 30s. Light winds becoming northwest around 10 mph in the afternoon. By Friday rain and snow is forecast and by Saturday just rain is expected.

SNOHOMISH WX: Snow showers occasionally mixed with rain this evening. Snow accumulation up to 2 inches. Lows near 30. Southeast wind 10 to 20 mph. On Xmas day snow showers. Snow accumulation up to 2 inches. Total snow accumulation up to 4 inches. Highs in the mid 30s. Light winds becoming northwest around 10 mph in the afternoon. By Friday it should be cloudy with a chance of rain or snow in the morning then rain in the afternoon.

SULTAN WX: Snow showers occasionally mixed with rain this evening. Snow accumulation up to 2 inches. Lows near 30. Southeast wind 10 to 20 mph. Xmas day Snow showers. Snow accumulation up to 2 inches. Total snow accumulation up to 4 inches. Highs in the mid 30s. Light winds becoming northwest around 10 mph in the afternoon. By Friday cloudy with a chance of rain or snow in the morning then rain in the afternoon. Highs in the 30s. South wind 10 to 15 mph.

GOLD BAR: Snow showers...Occasionally mixed with rain this evening. Snow accumulation up to 2 inches. Lows near 30. Southeast wind 10 to 20 mph. Xmas day Snow showers. Snow accumulation up to 2 inches. Total snow accumulation up to 4 inches. Highs in the mid 30s. Light winds becoming northwest around 10 mph in the afternoon. By Friday Cloudy with a chance of rain or snow in the morning...Then rain in the afternoon. Highs in the 30s. South wind 10 to 15 mph.

INDEX, WA: Snow showers. Snow level 500 feet. Snow accumulation of 3 to 6 inches. Southeast wind in the passes 10 to 15 mph this evening becoming light. Snow showers. Snow level 500 feet. Snow accumulation of 3 to 6 inches. Total snow accumulation 6 to 12 inches. Afternoon pass temperatures in the lower 20s. South wind in the passes around 10 mph. Snow and rain mixed will not come until Friday night. Snow level at 2000 feet. Southwest wind in the passes around 15 mph shifting to the south after midnight.

SKYKOMISH: Snow showers. Snow level at 500 feet. Snow accumulation of 3 to 6 inches. Southeast wind in the passes 10 to 15 mph this evening becoming light. For Xmas Day: snow showers. Snow level 500 feet. Snow accumulation of 3 to 6 inches. Total snow accumulation 6 to 12 inches. Afternoon pass temperatures in the lower 20s. South wind in the passes around 10 mph. Snow and rain mixed is not expected until Friday night. Snow level 2000 feet. Southwest wind in the passes around 15 mph shifting to the south after midnight.





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