What a Windy Week! Now Something Mysterious May Fall from the Sky

Wow what a week!  All that wind with not much rain!

We had three strong rounds of winds, each with a peak gust at or exceeding 40 mph

11/30 –     40 mph    S    Precip = 0.5″

12/02 –     45 mph    E    Precip = 0.0″

12/05-      60 mph    E    Precip = 0.0″

I like to track the windstorms that hit the Snoqualmie Valley area (most are gap winds from the east), which clock a peak gust at or above 40 mph.  Usually 6-8 per fall/winter season, with the bulk after New Years’, when E. WA gets super cold and we get some really good pressure differences with storms off the coast.  

We’re already at three!  The most damaging of which was Saturday morning, bringing down trees and fences.  The peak gusts didn’t last long but were ferocious.

Wunderground Weather Station

Got to squeeze more pain into 2020 I guess, am I right .. ?!? 

I haven’t seen a gust of 60 mph in several years.  Many that have lived in the area for a couple of decades may recall the monster December 3rd, 2003, gap wind storm.  While I’m not aware of wind measurements here back then, Enumclaw’s spotter on that day did clock a gust at 80 mph!  Many trees and mass power outages from that event.  Yes, we’ve had more widespread S/SW wind direction events since then, most notably the Hanukkah eve storm of 2006 that left hundreds of thousands in Washington without power for days, and I’ll never forget the yellow haze over the lowlands from all the wood-burning.  I was in Renton when we finally got power back after a week, Christmas eve morning that year.

This was also a week without very little rain.  But looking ahead, that looks set to change.

While we might see drizzle or a stray shower Sunday morning as a weak front moves through, Monday looks dry and a fighting chance for the sun to breakthrough.

However, Tuesday, we should see the beginning of a pattern change that will bring the return of rain for much of the week ahead.  Nothing crazy in the wind department, but enough rain to remind us what season we’re in.

A stronger system is expected to arrive later Wednesday and stick around into Thursday after a brief break. 

Probably not cold enough to be snow at Snoqualmie Pass Tuesday, but a bit colder, and lowering snow levels should be kinder to skiers later Wednesday through Friday.  A few inches to be expected.

As is usually the case in the longer range, next weekend looks rather uncertain.  As of now, the Euro has a fairly significant Low passing by Vancouver Is. next Sunday or Monday, which is usually a more classic wind-maker scenario for much of Western Washington. Not the gap winds we’re suddenly becoming all too accustomed with:) We’ll keep an eye on it.

Have a great week!

[Originally published at Snoqualmie Weather blog During active weather follow more frequent updates @snoqualmiewx or on Facebook]

Comments are closed.


  • Not sure if you were here during 1990….But the wind got so bad schools closed down. Ill never forget, I was in 2nd grade at NBE and there were tiles flying through the windows, 2 of which stuck in the wall of my class. We all had to lay down and had to crawl to the bathrooms. Quite interesting. It was 90+ MPH and I believe there were gusts that were over 100. Even Potted plants at our apartment in SI View had exploded from the pressure.

    1. I have Jan 11 1990 as storm # 6 here
      Might that have been the one you remember? https://snoqualmiewx.blogspot.com/p/top-10-gap-windstorms.html
      Most of the observed records are from wind measurements in Enumclaw, so 90-100 mph quite possible!

  • Living Snoqualmie