Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Washington Cascades Weather- Extended Outlook

Updated 12-16-2014

We have some weather systems moving in late this Thursday  through the upcoming weekend so we should get some snow (finally) especially on this Thursday night and Friday at close to 4000 to 5000 feet. Then on later on Saturday and into early Sunday we get a warm up with snow levels over 6000 feet (sorry- skiers).

Then the extended forecast for 12-24 to 12-30 indicates below normal temperatures with normal to below normal precipitation. With this pattern we will get some ridging at times (see map and click below). This pattern is  not good to build the snowpack.

Many of the extended seasonal models continue to show that an El Nino (above normal sea surface temperatures of the coast of South America) forming this winter. Right now we have neutral conditions. On the average when we have an El Nino  the Pacific Northwest usually (but not always) gets above normal temperatures and below normal precipitation.

Click here to view 500 mb map (18,000')



 Snow on the ground as percent of normal

From NW Avalanche Center as of 12-15-2014: Mt Baker 10%, Stevens Pass 25%, Snoq Pass 9%, Paradise 32%

Cloud Seeding = More Snow?

Cloud seeding has been used for many years to increase precipitation with mixed results in the past. However is it working now? Click here to see if cloud seeding works

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Monday, December 15, 2014

Fagin's Hike of the Week- Rattlesnake Mt. Traverse

Updated: 12-16-2014

A nice workout with a two car shuttle you can hike the entire length of Rattlesnake Mt. near North Bend. There is just patchy snow near top which is usual for this time of the year. Can have nice views depends on cloud cover..
View from ledge - Mt. Si of course
View of Mt. Baker from Grand Prospect
View from Grand Prospect

Driving Directions:  Take two cars and park one at the west end then the other at the east end. For the West end: Take I-90 east to Exit 27 then go right and follow the road to the end. Need Discover Pass. This is the Snoqualmie Point trailhead. For the East end- Rattlesnake Lake: From Seattle drive east on I-90 to exit 32 and go right on 436th Avenue SE and drive about 4.5 miles and parking on right. Need Discover Pass.

Trail Stats: Some descriptions indicate 10.2 miles roundtrip. We showed closer to 10.7 miles roundtrip with about 2500 foot gain.


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Disclaimer: There are many factors which you should consider in deciding whether to proceed with an outing, including the visible weather at the trailhead, the strength and experience of the party, snow and avalanche conditions, route conditions, etc. You are the final decision maker whether to proceed. West Coast Weather, LLC dba Washington Online Weather cannot be held liable for loss or injury arising from your decision to proceed, and expressly disclaims all liability related thereto. Redmond, Washington USA. Also, please bring map-compass and GPS to help with trail directions as our directions are our best estimate.

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Fagin's Hike of the Week- Snow Lake

Issued 12-10-2014

With the lack of snow one can get to the ridge above Snow Lake or drop down to the lake without snowshoes at this point in time. We used traction foot wear ("Yaktrax" or   "Microspikes")  and trekking poles help. This trail is heavily used so lots of hard-packed snow and or some ice. These are the conditions for now.
With the wet and windy forecast for today 12-10 and 12-11 the weather would be better on this Friday 12-12 or Saturday 12-13 to hike.



Snow Lake @ Denis DuBois
Melt + freezing=ice @ Denis DuBois
Views on the way up


Driving Directions: From Seattle drive east on I-90 to exit 52. Turn left (north), and continue to the end of the road at the Alpental Ski Area parking lot.

Trail Stats: Hike to junction with Snow Lake Trail (go to right) at Source Lake Junction. Total distance to Snow Lake is 6 miles roundtrip and about 1400' gain.


Disclaimer: There are many factors which you should consider in deciding whether to proceed with an outing, including the visible weather at the trailhead, the strength and experience of the party, snow and avalanche conditions, route conditions, etc. You are the final decision maker whether to proceed. West Coast Weather, LLC dba Washington Online Weather cannot be held liable for loss or injury arising from your decision to proceed, and expressly disclaims all liability related thereto. Redmond, Washington USA. Also, please bring map-compass and GPS to help with trail directions as our directions are our best estimate.

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Washington Cascades Weather- Extended Outlook

Issued 12-10-2014

Forecast models continue the above normal temperatures and precipitation pattern. The main reason is we continue to have troughs of low pressure that drop down from the north and west from the Gulf of Mexico (see link with map below). This pattern should continue through at least 12-20-2014 so snowpack will be below normal.

Click here for 500 mb map- 18,000'

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Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Weather Washington Cascades- Extended Outlook

Issued 12-3-2014

Starting later this week temperatures will return to normal to above normal and above normal precipitation will be the rule. We will tend to have troughs of low pressure forming off our coast (see link below) and moisture will move in off the coast. This should be the pattern through December 15, 2014.

Click link here for 500 mb map-18,000'

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Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Fagin's Hike of the Week- West Tiger 1

Issued 12-2-2014

Great views from the top!! We hard packed snow on the trail. With ice in spots trekking poles and some traction on your boots is a good plan. Only 2 to 3 inches of snow on the top. Best days for views is today and Wednesday.
Lunch and view of Mt. Rainier
Mike and view of the Olympics in background
Mike and Sharman keeiping each other warm
Hikers Hut was dark inside views better from outside
Directions:  From Seattle drive I-90 east and get off at Highpoint Exit. Turn right at the bottom of the exit. Then go a short distance the start of the trail is to the left at the road is gated. Do not block the gate and park in the general area and have your Discover Pass.

Trail Stats:  Start at gated road and hike on road about 0.20 of a mile and you will come to an unmarked trail on your right (south) take this. This will become marked and is the High Point Trail. Take this about 1 mile and you come to the junction to Tiger Mountain Trail and turn left (east) and continue on this trail for about 1 mile as it goes south. You will reach a junction "Fred's Corner" and turn left (east) and go 0.40 miles to "Preston Junction.". Then turn right (north) onto West Tiger 1 Trail go about 1 mile to the summit 2948 feet. You can go another 0.3 miles for better views. This is 7.8 miles round trip and 2500 foot gain.


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Disclaimer: There are many factors which you should consider in deciding whether to proceed with an outing, including the visible weather at the trailhead, the strength and experience of the party, snow and avalanche conditions, route conditions, etc. You are the final decision maker whether to proceed. West Coast Weather, LLC dba Washington Online Weather cannot be held liable for loss or injury arising from your decision to proceed, and expressly disclaims all liability related thereto. Redmond, Washington USA. Also, please bring map-compass and GPS to help with trail directions as our directions are our best estimate.

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Weather Washington Cascades- Extended Outlook

Issued: 11-26-2014

Forecast models show a progressive pattern with weather systems moving in and out of our region through December 6. In general we will have a zonal pattern with weather systems moving from the west to east (zonal flow). This pattern generally brings normal to above normal temperatures and above normal precipitation. The map below reflects this pattern that will be in place on and off through December 6.

Click here for 500 mb map at 18,000 feet

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