A big change in the weather pattern is expected later this week. In the meantime, upper level ridging will maintain well above normal temperatures and dry conditions for much of the area through Wednesday. A slight cooling trend is expected Tuesday and Wednesday as a few weak fronts brush by the northern portions of the forecast area. These fronts will bring increased cloud cover with some light precipitation to coastal areas and north of the Umpqua Divide.
Conditions change much more noticeably Thursday as a strong cold front moves into the area. Widespread precipitation is expected with moderate rainfall possible west of the Cascades. Currently, rainfall rates are not expected to meet thresholds for flash flooding/debris flow concerns. In addition, breezy to gusty winds are expected with and behind the front Thursday into Friday. Winds will be strongest in the typical places, along the coast and higher terrain as well as east of the Cascades. A cold air mass will follow the front Thursday, bringing the lowest snow levels of the season so far.
By Friday afternoon, snow levels will be down to 4000-4500 ft, lowering further to 3000 ft Friday night. The bulk of the precipitation will already be through the area by the time snow levels drop, but showers will continue through Sunday. There looks to be a break in the weather late Sunday into Monday. However, guidance indicates active weather will continue into next week with additional chances for precipitation.