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Hole the Size of Texas

By: NewportOr , 4:04 PM GMT on February 22, 2014

Saturday, Feb. 22nd – Lincoln County

Summary: Yesterday panned out nicely. A hole in the clouds the size of Texas opened up over the Northwest, giving the Central Coast lots of much-needed, and much-appreciated, sunshine with a high about 50F. Northerly winds yesterday afternoon were mostly less than 20 mph; Waldport reported a gust to 22 mph. Friday morning’s hanger-on rainfall was barely recordable. The downside of the clearing skies was that it got colder overnight and Jack Frost paid us a visit this morning. The upside, in addition to yesterday’s sunshine, was for people up before sunrise today who got to view an immense, bright and spectacular Venus hanging in the eastern sky like a second Moon.

Past 24 Hours High/Low/Rain...
Lincoln City: 55F/38F/0.00”
Depoe Bay: 49F/33F/0.01”
Newport: 50F/32F/0.00”
Waldport: 50F/37F/0.00”
Yachats: 48F/32F/0.01”

Forecast: A week ago today the wind was roaring at 60-70 mph and it was pouring rain. Today, rounds of high-fives are more than likely rippling through the planners of the Newport Seafood & Wine Festival as they wake to sunny skies, light winds and a forecast high around 50F for the event’s biggest day. The organizers might get a smidge jittery tonight, though, when a few clouds ease in along with some patchy fog. Low about 35F overnight. For the festival’s last day tomorrow, increasing clouds, light winds, and the mercury rising again to about 50F. Outlook is for a change back to wet weather for most of the week ahead. Rain is forecast Sunday night and Monday, a chance of showers Tuesday, rain again on Wednesday and Friday. The good news is that there doesn’t appear to be much wind with these systems.

Travel: Expect heavier than normal traffic today on all Central Coast highways as the first sunny weekend in a long time and the Newport Seafood & Wine Festival draw thousands of visitors to our area. Delays are possible, especially on Highways 18 and 20 westbound today, eastbound tomorrow, and on Highway 101 between its junction with Highway 18 north of Lincoln City on south through Newport.

As of 8:00am, Highways 18, 20 and 34 are open but below freezing with spots of ice. These slick patches could last through mid-morning in shaded areas before it warms to around 45F today. There’s also a chance of frosty and icy areas on Highway 101 along the Central Coast this morning. Valley destinations have patchy fog and icy spots early today, but will be warming into the 40s. In the Cascades, highways have icy spots. Carry chains or traction tires. The freezing level is 3,000 feet. Outlook for weekend travelers along the Central Coast, in the Coast Range and the Valley is mostly to partly cloudy, patchy fog and icy spots again tonight and tomorrow morning; a chance of snow showers is forecast in the Cascades.

Cascades Snow Pack: Currently 123”, a loss of 5” since yesterday, or 76% of normal.

Ski Report - New Snow Inches/Total Inches/Condition...
Hoodoo 1/48/Packed Powder
Willamette Pass 0/26/Machine Groomed
Mt Bachelor 0/114/Packed Powder
Mt Hood Meadows 4/118/Packed Powder
Mt Hood Ski Bowl 12/45/Machine Groomed
Timberline Lodge 1/137/Packed Powder

Marine: The ocean is fairly choppy offshore this morning with a 6 foot NW swell, wind waves at 4 feet and NE winds up around 15-20 knots; winds and waves are much less imposing in near-shore waters. These same conditions are expected to persist the rest of today. As of 8:00am, Depoe Bay and Yaquina Bay bars are unrestricted. Tonight, the breeze eases to NE 5-10 knots after midnight and the swell drops to around 4 feet. On Sunday, the wind veers first E, then SE 5-10 knots in advance of a front. But with seas subsiding to just 3 feet, tomorrow could be the nicest day on local waters for the past couple of weeks. Outlook is for S winds rising to 15-20 knots on Monday, seas 4 feet. Ditto Tuesday. By Wednesday wave heights are back on the rise to 8-10 feet, though winds should stay under 20 knots.

On the Beach... Mostly sunny, light wind, surf 4-5 feet (low).
02/22 Sat 11:53 AM 1.15 L
02/22 Sat 06:22 PM 5.8 H
02/22 Sat 11:13 PM 3.39 L
02/23 Sun 05:46 AM 8.45 H

In Short: Partly cloudy, light winds, then back to rain.

The views of the author are his/her own and do not necessarily represent the position of The Weather Company or its parent, IBM.

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4:07 PM GMT on February 23, 2014
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Coastal forecaster, weather observer and offshore sailor specializing in the local nuances of Central Oregon Coast weather for residents and visitors.

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