Strong winds and heavy spring showers ruffled emerging cherry blossoms Sunday, with gusts pushing a cold front into the region that brought a mix of rain and mountain snow.

The National Weather Service in Seattle issued a winter storm warning for the central Cascade mountains, with 8 to 12 inches of snow expected Sunday, and the potential for more if a convergence zone materializes over Stevens Pass.

The snow in the Cascades was expected to persist into early Monday morning.

West of the Cascades, winds associated with the weather system had threatened to be strong enough to damage tree limbs and cause localized power outages, the forecasters warned Sunday morning. At their peak, the strongest winds exceeded 50 mph in towns that included Everett, Ferndale in Whatcom County, and Shelton, according to the NWS in Seattle.

The winds appeared to generally have peaked Sunday afternoon, NWS tweeted.

Gale warnings were expected to be in effect over much of the area through Monday morning.

The weather is expected to quiet down Monday and warmer temperatures, perhaps as high as 60 degrees on Wednesday, are on the way under sunny skies.