As much as 2 feet of snow could fall Tuesday night in the Cascade Mountains in Pierce and Lewis counties, and mountain passes in King and Snohomish counties are likely to see 6 to 10 more inches of snow.
About a dozen trees toppled because of heavy snow at Stevens Pass on Monday, closing Highway 2 from about 2:30 p.m. Monday to about 4:45 a.m. Tuesday between the summit at milepost 66 and Coles Corner at milepost 84. Stevens Pass had been under a winter storm warning, according to the National Weather Service.
Slush and snow remained on the roadway at Stevens on Tuesday morning. Traction tires were advised and oversized trucks were restricted on Stevens and White passes Tuesday, according to the state Department of Transportation (WSDOT).
Snoqualmie Pass was clear but wet Tuesday evening, according to WSDOT.
An avalanche warning is in effect Tuesday for much of the Cascades in north and central Washington, according to the Northwest Avalanche Center.
In the lowlands, more rain is expected, with 15-25 mph winds. Rain from the past few days has brought many rivers to flood stage and increased the risk of landslides.
The snow level was above 4,000 feet Tuesday afternoon, but it should reach 1,500 feet by Wednesday morning, according to the weather service.
As for the possibility of snow falling on the Seattle area later this week? Even the weather service cannot yet predict that.
On Tuesday afternoon, the weather service said parts of Whatcom and Skagit counties could see light, wet snow Wednesday night. Snow is also possibly north of Everett and along the foothills of the Cascades Friday morning, but any accumulations are expected to be minimal.
A cold weather pattern is expected to settle into Western Washington early next week, bringing a possibility of lowland snow, but the weather service said it’s highly uncertain.
“I like to be cautious, as the models are all over the map, and regardless of what the models say, it’s really hard to say until it’s right on our doorstep,” said meteorologist Dustin Guy.
What he can say, though, is that the temperatures will be trending colder than average.
“There’s good reason we don’t get snow a lot here (in the lowlands), and that’s called the Pacific Ocean and the mountains east of us that are effective barriers against the cold bottled east of us,” Guy said. “… Best I can say is stay tuned.”