Rain water can’t soak into the frozen ground
A flood advisory for the Inland Northwest was lifted today, but more rain remains in the forecast through early next week.
Rainfall at lower elevations has not been able to soak through a layer of frozen soil left behind by arctic cold earlier this season.
The National Weather Service issued the advisory on Wednesday.
A break from rain was occurring across the region today with lows tonight remaining above freezing.
Forecasters are calling for a continuation of the recent mild and wet weather through the weekend with highs reaching the middle 40s on Friday with a 30 percent chance of rain increasing to 70 percent Friday night.
A strong southwesterly flow is expected to continue for several days as a digging Pacific jet stream runs into a high pressure ridge across the Rockies and central Plains regions, forcing storms northward on the western side of the high.
Precipitation should fall across a broad swath of the western U.S. into British Columbia through the weekend.
As a result, rainfall is expected at times through Saturday, easing off Saturday night and Sunday, but then returning on Sunday night and Monday.
Temperatures will remain in the same range - 40s during the day and middle 30s at night.
Snow levels to the north of Spokane and Coeur d’Alene should run from 3,500 to 4,000 feet in elevation.
In the central Panhandle mountains, snow levels will go from 3,500 feet today up to 5,000 feet over the weekend.
Snow levels are not expected to drop below 3,000 feet until Monday night.
Mid-elevation snowpack is important for building water reserves for streams and lakes, and the milder weather has been robbing the lower mountains of snow accumulations.
At 7 a.m., it was 35 at Spokane International Airport, 38 in downtown Spokane, 37 in Coeur d’Alene, 36 in Deer Park and 37 in Pullman.
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