October 29, 2009 in City, Idaho

Season’s first snow falling around region

By The Spokesman-Review
Mike Prager photo

Some of the season’s first snow collects around landscaping at Spokane International Airport on Thursday morning.
(Full-size photo)

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National Weather Service forecasters are sticking with a prediction of snow today as a warm front off of the Pacific Ocean glides over colder air at ground level.

Snow levels will retreat to the mountains on Friday night when another storm front is expected.

This morning, precipitation from the warm front initially evaporated and cooled the air, allowing for snow to reach lower elevations of the region.

At 1 p.m., the temperature had climbed from 32 to 34 degrees at Spokane International Airport. Light snow was reported at the Spokane airport, Pullman and Deer Park. A mix of snow and rain was reported at Fairchild Air Force Base.

Earlier, reports of snow came from Colbert and Post Falls. Very light snow was also seen at Stateline and in Spokane Valley. A mix of rain and snow had been falling in downtown Spokane.

Snow was sticking to grass at elevations above 2,000 feet, but not to roadways in valley locations. Downtown Spokane is at 1,850 feet.

At higher elevations, snow was accumulating at the region’s ski areas; on Interstate 90 at Lookout Pass; and state Highway 20 at Sherman Pass.

Forecaster Jon Fox said the temperature of road pavement is too warm this time of year for light snow to stick to it at lower elevations.

The main body of today’s storm is projected to move into British Columbia through the day with lighter amounts of precipitation dragging southward into the Inland Northwest.

Only about 0.04 inches of precipitation were measured so far today at the Spokane airport.

Later today, the snow should change to a rain and snow mix before becoming all rain. The high in Spokane is forecasted to reach 38 degrees and Coeur d’Alene. Light winds are forecasted from the south.

A hazardous weather outlook was posted for the possibility of snow through 2 p.m. Rain is likely tonight as the storm’s milder air replaces the colder air now in place over lower elevations of the region. Lows tonight should dip to the middle 30s.

Another round of precipitation is expected on Friday night.

The high on Wednesday at the Spokane airport was 43.

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