Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Washington Cascades- Extended Outlook

Updated 4-1-2015

Most forecast models are bringing above normal precipitation through April 14 and the main reason is troughs of low pressure (see link to map below) will drop down from the northwest over the period. The major uncertainly in the  forecasts is if temperatures will be above or below normal. I would think they would tend to be below normal.

500 mb map for April 10


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Fagin's Hike of the Week- Umtanum Ridge

Updated 3-30-2015

Great hike this time of the year with flowers coming out and views of Mt. Rainier, Mt. Adams, and Mt. Stuart from the top. Trail is north of Yakima.





Michael on the way up @ Denis DuBois
Start of the hike

View of Mt. Rainier from top @ Brian Fagin
Yakima River
Balsamroot @Denis DuBois
Prime time for flowers @ Denis DuBois
Driving directions: From Seattle, drive east on Interstate 90 to exit 110. After exiting, continue east on Interstate 82 about 3.5 miles to exit 3 (Thrall Road). At the stop sign, turn right on State Route 821. Turn left at the next stop sign to continue southeast along State Route 821 into Yakima Canyon (signed "Yakima Canyon") and continue about 8 miles to the Umtanum Recreation Area (between mileposts 16 and 17). A large gravel parking lot is on the right  side of the road. The parking lot is BLM you can pay $5.00 from 5/15 - 9/15 to park; fee collection box is at the parking lot. Although now a Discovery Pass will work.

Trail stats: Cross the Yakima River via the broad foot-traffic-only suspension bridge, then cross the high berm of the railroad tracks. Once over the railroad route, enter the L. T. Murray State Wildlife Recreation Area.. In less then a 1/4 mile there will be a "Y" junction in the trail. Take the left fork this goes uphill. The right fork goes through the Creek Canyon. On left fork go 2.5 miles and 2100 feet you will be up on the ridge on Yakima Skyline Trail











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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, March 25, 2015

Weather Washington Cascades- Extended Outlook

Issued 3-25-2015

Forecast models are indicating active storm track over the Northwest through early April. We will have weather systems moving in and out of the region at times. So precipitation will tend to be above normal with normal to above normal temperatures. However we will get some dry periods like this Thursday 3-26 and most of Friday 3-27..

500 mb map for April 4, 2015


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Fagin's Hike of the Week- Easton Ridge

Updated 3-24-2015


Easton Ridge is snowfree except just a few small snow patches. Flowers are starting to bloom already. Might have a slight dusting of new snow from today 3-25-2015. Great views on this Thursday and Friday (3-27-2015)


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Mt. Stuart to the left
Flowers starting to come out
Cle Elum Lake 
View of Cle Elum Lake and clouds rolling in

Bridge crossing of Silver Creek @ Dennis Long
From FS 4818  turn right on an unmarked road with this reflector (the reflector is now gone!)  next to it Waypoint N47.15.976 W121.11.154@ 2260'
Directions: From Seattle drive I-90 east and get off at Exit 70. Proceed over the freeway and turn left onto frontage road. Then turn right on FS Road 4818 (signed Kachess Dam Road). Stay on Road No. 4818 go less then one mile to an unsigned road junction, turn right-- on  (see photo above). Continue about 3/4 mile to the trailhead trail 1315 (Silver Creek) , elevation 2,368 feet (it is also the trailhead for Easton Ridge). Waypoints at Trailhead are N 47.16.03 W 121.10.28 Careful trail is hard to find

Trail stats: Initially for a very short distance follow sign for for Silver Creek  trail 1315 but in less than 1/8 a mile you will notice a dirt path (on your right- unmarked) and  turn right on a path to the creek. Then once next to creek and on trail turn left and go a short distance upstream you’ll find the bridge and cross bridge and continue there and follow trail. In about a mile or so , at 3400 feet, you will reach a ridge top and turn right and follow trail 1212 and enjoy ridge top views. From the trailhead to the rocky outcroppings on the ridge crest it is approximately 7 miles round-trip with about 1,700-1,900 feet elevation gain. High point is at about 4500 feet.


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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Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Washington Cascades Weather- Extended Outlook

Update 3-18-2015

Forecast models from today through the end of the month bring weather systems in from the west and we mainly get a zonal pattern (from west to east). The bottom line weather with this pattern is above normal precipitation and temperatures.

500 mb map at 18,000'


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Monday, March 16, 2015

Fagin's Hike of the Week- Bare Mountain

Updated 3-16-2015

Note this was hiked Friday March 13 and trail was mostly snow free with some small snow patches just below the top. However there was some new snow above 4000 feet and up to the summit at 5300' this past Sunday (3-15) and not sure how much new snow there was.  My best estimate is  4 to 6" but I assume much of that has melted.  Bringing Yaktrak might be a good idea.


View of Glacier Peak @ Alan Bauer
With low river flow easy crossing @ Alan Bauer
On the way up warm day and no snow @ Alan Bauer
Driving Directions: From Seattle drive east on I-90 to exit 31 (North Bend). Drive through North Bend on Main Street, then turn north onto Ballaratt Street and follow it out of town. This road becomes North Fork Road SE. About 4 miles after leaving the North Bend city limits, the road forks. Stay left and continue another 17 miles to the Forest Service boundary, where the road becomes Forest Road 57. Just after crossing Lennox Creek, stay right at the next junction to continue on FR 57. At mile 23 find the trailhead on the left.

Trail Stats: 9 miles roundtrip and about a 3200 foot gain to the top at 5350'


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Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Washington Cascades Weather- Extended Outlook

Issued 3-11-2015

Forecast models seem to be inconsistent with the longer term outlooks. We alternative between a ridge of high pressure like we will have this Friday 3-13 than a strong trough of low pressure for this Saturday 3-14 with heavy precipitation.


The extended outlook  till March 24 is showing above normal temperatures and below normal precipitation. However, lower confidence in this forecast.

500 MB map at 18,000'


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