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Summer warmth moving east after today

Wed., June 22, 2011, 7:49 a.m.

Blue skies and soft clouds are a sure sign of summer. (Mike Prager)
Blue skies and soft clouds are a sure sign of summer. (Mike Prager)

A major warm up in progress over the Inland Northwest this morning is going to be moving out.

Highs are expected to reach 85 in Spokane and 84 in Coeur d’Alene today - the first day of the year with temperatures in the 80s.

But a new cold front is approaching the West Coast today and is easily seen on satellite pictures moving toward the region.

National Weather Service forecasters said the warm air should linger through the day and evening until the cold front arrives overnight.

The change will be dramatic and very spring-like. Thunderstorms are possible after 11 p.m. Gusty winds are likely Thursday and Thursday evening.

Here’s the weather service forecaster’s take on the change: “Breezy winds and below average temperatures will make Thursday feel more like early May than late June.”

Much cooler temperatures are in store for Thursday through Sunday when highs will be in the middle and upper 60s.

Winds in Spokane could gust to 25 mph on Thursday, and even a bit higher than that during the evening hours before the low pressure area associated with the cold front fills and spreads out its energy.

The high at Spokane International Airport on Tuesday was 77.

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