Mass: Rain Returns This Weekend, But Next Week Will Bring Signs Of Spring

Mar 7, 2014

After a record-breaking week of strong rain, Friday will bring a bit of reprieve. But the rain will return this weekend, even in the mountains, says KPLU weather expert Cliff Mass.

Still, there is good news: come next week, we’ll start transitioning into spring.

First, A Spring-like Break

Friday will feel like spring, says Mass, a professor of atmospheric sciences at the University of Washington.

“There’s a ridge over us and a few showers this morning, but they’re fading out. So a lot of people will see sun and temperatures could get into the upper 50s,” he said.  

Then Heavy Rain Returns

Come Saturday, we’ll get wet again, said Mass.

“And this is going to be a warm, wet system. Really warm,” he said, adding the freezing level could rise to 8,000 feet, with heavy rain in the mountains. “So, if you’re going to go skiing, you’re going to get wet, no matter what place you go to.”

Expect several inches of rain in the mountains and as much as a half-inch in the lowlands, says Mass.

“And it could get blustery, too; it’s a pretty strong front,” he said. Temperatures are expected to reach the upper 50s.

On Sunday, the system will pass, says Mass, bringing with it the showery regime we’re used to.

In the mountains, those showers will turn to snow. He predicts only a few showers in the lowlands, likely concentrated in the Puget Sound convergence zone between North Seattle and Lynnwood or Everett.

Next Week: Transition To Spring!

A ridge is moving in Monday that will dominate from Tuesday through Thursday.

“We’re going to break out of the rain and it’ll be spring-like — you’ll notice it," Mass said.

"There’ll be sun. There’ll even be temperatures getting up as high as close to 60 on Wednesday and Thursday,” Mass said.

He says that’s not too unusual; spring in the Northwest generally begins in mid- to late February.

“Calendar spring means nothing here in the Northwest,” said Mass, adding that as we get into late February and early March, the chance for “big storms, the chance of getting snow, big floods, big everything plummets.”

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The weekly KPLU feature "Weather with Cliff Mass" airs every Friday at 9 a.m. immediately following BirdNote, and twice on Friday afternoons during All Things Considered. The feature is hosted by KPLU Environment Reporter Bellamy Pailthorp. Cliff Mass is a University of Washington Professor of Atmospheric Sciences, a renowned Seattle weather prognosticator, and a popular weather blogger. You can also subscribe to a podcast of “Weather with Cliff Mass” shows.