Snow covered higher elevations in Spokane and the surrounding region this afternoon, but forecasters said the storm that brought it is moving east tonight.
About a half-inch of snow covered the ground on the South Hill above an elevation of 2,000 feet. Downtown Spokane at 1,850 feet had snow falling, but not sticking to many surfaces.
Snow showers were expected through about 7 p.m. in the Spokane area and 10 p.m. in Coeur d’Alene.
Raney Close, of Spokane, and her three children were out walking in the fresh snow at Manito Park.
She said her daughter told her she was glad it’s winter “so she can start drinking hot cocoa, I guess.”
The later arrival of the storm could push the snowfall into the evening rush hour when cooling conditions may allow some of it to stick to road surfaces, forecasters said this morning.
A hazardous outlook has been issued for the region for measureable snow. In Spokane, up to an inch was expected, with snow showers possible through the evening, forecasters said.
At 10 a.m., light snow was being reported in Wenatchee, Omak and Moses Lake. Heavy snow has been falling at Stampede Pass in the Cascades. Snow closed Snoqualmie Pass earlier today, but the pass reopened before 9 a.m.
All of Eastern Washington and North Idaho were expected to see snow today. The southern Columbia Basin reported rain.
In addition, North Idaho could see continued snow showers this evening as the front creates vertical air movement across the mountains.
Ski areas could see up to a foot of new snow by Saturday morning, forecasters said. That will help the resorts pile up snow for early-season skiing.
Highs should reach the middle 30s under partly sunny skies Saturday. Cloudy weather is expected Sunday with similar temperatures.
Lows tonight and Saturday night should be in the lower to middle 20s.
Milder weather is expected next week with highs Monday and Tuesday in the middle to upper 40s and a mix of sun and clouds.
At 7 a.m., temperatures were 32 at Spokane International Airport, 35 in downtown Spokane, 34 in Coeur d’Alene and Sandpoint, 30 in Deer Park and 28 in Pullman.