Widespread cold temperatures for Wed, Thu, and Fri nights with mitigation for tree fruits likely needed


Craig Oswald, Field Meteorologist, 509-786-9256
Joe Zagrodnik, Postdoctoral Research Associate

Summary:

The cooler than normal temperatures that have prevailed through Washington state over the last few days have been enough to provide cold temperature concern for certain tree fruits through eastern portions of the state. Typically colder locales have been practicing overnight cold temperature mitigation techniques through much of the week already. However, temperatures still look to dip a bit cooler through the end of the week, warranting a warning as more widespread mitigation will likely be necessary, including areas that have not had to make use of such practices yet this week.

Generally light winds, scattered cloud cover, and low dew points are expected to drop temperatures in cold prone areas to dangerous levels for budding and blossoming tree fruits in eastern Washington. The overnight expectant weather conditions look to lend to the formation of radiative inversions and plummeting surface temperatures through many fruit growing regions. The temperatures listed below in the regional breakouts are general temperature guidelines for the regions listed and the typical cold areas can expect temperatures several degrees colder than listed. With dew points as low as they are, the potential for surface temperatures to drop into the upper teens exists through areas such as the upper Yakima valley and Wenatchee through Okanogan region. Some areas prone to cold air pooling and that generally run colder than others on clear calm nights have already observed overnight low temperatures in the low 20s the previous few nights with similar light winds and slightly more cloud cover than what is expected over the next few nights. It is likely that temperatures will continue to remain in the low 20s in these coldest areas, but please be cognizant that the potential for upper teens is very much there.

Overnight temperatures look to begin slowly trending warmer Saturday night and through Sunday. This slight warming trend will be touched upon more on Fridays weekly outlook.


South Central Washington
  • Wind: Light winds, generally W/SW in western parts and S/SW in eastern parts of the region. A bit breezier at times during the day Thursday, especially through the Basin/Palouse. Winds picking up Friday with some gusts around 35 possible through the Basin/Palouse and becoming light and more variable during the overnight.
  • Precipitation: Continued chance for scattered rain showers and a few small hail/graupel showers. Conditions gradually trending dry through the end of the week with mostly dry conditions expected by Friday.
  • High Temps: Low 50s Thursday, low 50s Friday, mid 50s Saturday.
  • Low Temps: Upper 20s Wednesday night, near 30 Thursday night, upper 20s Friday night, mid 30s Saturday night.
  • Dewpoints: Upper teens Wednesday night, mid teens Thursday night, upper teens Friday night, low 20s Saturday night.
  • Sky Cover: Mostly clear Wednesday night, mostly sunny Thursday, mostly clear Thursday night, sunny Friday, mostly clear Friday night, mostly sunny Saturday, becoming mostly cloudy Saturday night.

North Central Washington
  • Wind: Light winds, generally N/NW. Turning SW and a bit breezier (especially through the Basin) at times during the day Thursday. Winds picking up Friday with some gusts around 35 mph+ possible through the Basin and becoming light and NW, yet variable during the overnight.
  • Precipitation: Continued scattered rain and upland snow showers, along with a few small hail/graupel showers possible through the end of the week. Northern parts of the Basin likely to trend mostly dry by Friday.
  • High Temps: Low 50s Thursday, near 50 Friday, upper 40s Saturday. Cooler through higher terrain.
  • Low Temps: Mid 20s Wednesday night, upper 20s Thursday night, mid 20s Friday night, low 30s Saturday night. Cooler through higher terrain.
  • Dewpoints: Mid teens Wednesday night, mid teens Thursday night, mid teens Friday night, upper teens Saturday night.
  • Sky Cover: Mostly clear Wednesday night, mostly sunny Thursday, partly cloudy Thursday night, mostly sunny Friday, partly cloudy Friday night, mostly sunny Saturday, becoming mostly cloudy Saturday night.

Eastern Washington
  • Wind: Light S/SW winds. A bit breezier at times during the day Thursday, especially through the Basin/Palouse. Winds picking up Friday with some gusts around 35 mph+ possible through the Basin/Palouse and becoming light and generally S during the overnight.
  • Precipitation: Scattered rain and snow showers, along with a few small hail/graupel showers, to continue through the end of the week, particularly along the Idaho border. More interior portions of the region likely to trend dry by Friday.
  • High Temps: Mid 40s Thursday, mid 40s Friday, mid 40s Saturday.
  • Low Temps: Mid 20s Wednesday night, upper 20s Thursday night, mid 20s Friday night, near 30 Saturday night.
  • Dewpoints: Mid 20s Wednesday night, low 20s Thursday night, upper teens Friday night, low 20s Saturday night.
  • Sky Cover: Partly cloudy Wednesday night, partly sunny Thursday, partly cloudy Thursday night, mostly sunny Friday, partly cloudy Friday night, mostly sunny Saturday, becoming mostly cloudy Saturday night.

Western Washington
  • Wind: Light S/SW winds. A bit breezier at times near the coast and Puget sound. Winds picking up Friday with some gusts around 35 possible. Becoming light and more variable during the overnight.
  • Precipitation: Continuation of scattered rain and mountain snow showers, along with a few small hail/graupel showers possible through the end of the week. Light accumulations expected at pass levels. Areas of lowland fog.
  • High Temps: Upper 40s Thursday, Upper 40s Friday, near 50 Saturday. Much cooler through the Cascades and Olympics.
  • Low Temps: Low 30s Wednesday night, low 30s Thursday night, low 30s Friday night, mid 30s Saturday night. Much cooler through the Cascades and Olympics.
  • Dewpoints: Low 30s Wednesday night, low 30s Thursday night, upper 20s Friday night, low 30s Saturday night.
  • Sky Cover: Mostly cloudy Wednesday night, partly sunny Thursday, partly cloudy Thursday night, partly sunny Friday, partly cloudy Friday night, partly sunny Saturday, mostly cloudy Saturday night.

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