Atmospheric River Expected To Cause Extended Period Of Rain & Snow

First off, what’s an atmospheric river? It’s a plume of moisture that originates in the tropic regions and then is transported to the west coast.

Below is one of the forecast models showing an atmospheric river aimed at Oregon for this incoming storm. The moisture plume extends from Oregon to Hawaii.


Extended Period Of Rain And Snow

Light snow is expected late Friday night into Saturday afternoon. According to the latest information from the NWS, they are expecting an extended period of precipitation for us starting as snow and then changing to rain. The precipitation is likely to be a 4-5 day event.

Currently about 4-6 inches of snow are expected for Klamath Falls from Saturday into Monday. A changeover to rain is likely overnight Sunday or Monday morning. The changeover timing depends on the storm track and several other factors.

This precipitation event is expected to last Saturday into Wednesday at least. A cold front is also expected to stall over Oregon during this time adding to the precipitation amounts. All of this combined with a strong jet stream brings together a storm that is capable of producing very large amounts of snow and rain over an extended period of time.


Above: Snow amounts expected into Monday before is expected to change to rain. 36 inches of snow are possible at Lake Of The Woods and over 50″ possible at Crater Lake.


Above: Rain expected after the change from snow into Wednesday.

Hazards You Might See: 

Travel: Highway 97 North, Highway 140 East & West, and roads to Diamond Lake and Crater Lake could become hazardous for travel and highly impacted by this storm. Winds are also expected at the higher elevations possibly causing drifting snow. Snow plows and road crews are likely to be overwhelmed with a storm like this in the higher elevations.

Flooding & Landslides: right now it looks like most of the flooding problems will be over on the west side and coast range. However, we have been told the NWS will be watching rivers in our area closely as well. Other hazards include the possibility of isolated white outs, impassable roads, slower response times from emergency services and power outages.

A few things to keep in mind: Forecasts are educated guesses and storms don’t always behave as expected. We might see more or less precipitation or a longer or shorter period of snow and rain depending on the storm track. How much water our snow (and ground) can absorb also will be a factor for any flooding we might see in our local area.

Over the next few days, conditions will be present for impressive amounts of rain and snow so expect stormy weather Saturday into Wednesday at least.

We will keep an eye on all of this and update you as needed. The NWS will no doubt have a very busy next couple of days keeping us all informed about this incoming storm.

As always, real time alerts will be posted to our breaking news service for coverage of any potential events related to this storm.