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Accumulating snow expected in Inland NW

UPDATED: Thu., Dec. 13, 2012, 3:42 p.m.

This week’s snow and rain storms may have failed to bring any significant accumulation to the Spokane area, but National Weather Service forecasters said that trend may end this weekend.

Meager amounts of snow in Spokane on Sunday and Wednesday may have disappointed fans of winter weather, but motorists who fear icy roads and those who hate clearing off their pavement were happy.

Now, a series of storms headed toward the Inland Northwest beginning on Friday threatens to do what earlier storms failed to do.

One to 3 inches is possible Saturday night to be followed by another 1 to 3 inches mainly after midnight on Sunday.

The first of the storms arrives later in the morning hours on Friday and should bring a dusting to light accumulations through Friday evening, forecasters said.

Things get more serious later on Saturday when a stronger system enters the region with the potential for up to 3 inches in Spokane and and up to 2 inches in Coeur d’Alene.

Forecasters early Thursday said there was an outside chance that the Saturday night storm could bring heavier accumulations of 3 to 5 inches, but the afternoon forecast dropped that idea.

The next storm late on Sunday may bring another 1 to 3 inches in Spokane and 2 to 4 inches in Coeur d’Alene, mainly after midnight and into the early-morning hours Monday.

Milder air mixing in from the south may cause snow levels to rise and bring a mix of precipitation types mainly over southern portions of the region and rain by Monday. The timing of the milder air will affect total snow accumulations.

Spokane is currently forecasted to be on the colder side of the storm Sunday night, but the Monday morning commute is likely to be slushy, forecasters said.

On Monday, snow levels will start out at 2,800 feet with rain and snow in the forecast. Colder air by nighttime will bring a return of snowy conditions.

The parade of storms may ease early by Tuesday, but breezy to windy conditions are expected and drifting is possible in some locales, forecasters said.

Highs in Spokane will be in the middle 30s with lows in the upper 20s through the period.

Tags: snow, weather

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