The Inland Northwest should enjoy one more day of warm spring weather as a big change arrives on Thursday.
The National Weather Service is warning that an incoming storm may generate strong thunderstorms with rain, hail and gusty winds.
The chance of thunderstorms begins early on Thursday and then settles down during the day prior to the arrival of a cold front some time between 3-5 p.m. in Eastern Washington and North Idaho.
The high in Spokane and Coeur d’Alene could reach 76 on Thursday ahead of the cold front. Winds should be light until the big change arrives.
By Thursday night, the chance of heavy rain is pegged at 100 percent.
Forecasters said a few supercell thunderstorms could form over southeast Washington and track northward near the Washington-Idaho border.
“These will be the cells that bear watching with the potential for moderate hail stones, gusty winds, heavy downpours, and frequent lightning,” forecasters said online.
Winds could be strong and gusty with cold front passage over the period of several hours when the risk of thunderstorms is greatest.
By Friday, the air will feel decidedly cooler with highs in the low to middle 50s. The chance of more showers remains high through the day.
Rainfall amounts both days could reach one-quarter inch or more in Spokane, but even more under thunderstorm downpours. That should prevent lawns and gardens from needing irrigation for a while.
Conditions settle down Friday night with a low of 40.
The cold front will signal the arrival of a large pool of lower air pressure from the northwest, which will keep temperatures in the 50s for highs through Sunday.
Shower chances in Spokane will run 40-50 percent on Saturday and Sunday. Lows will stay in the low 40s.
Temperatures moderate to the upper 50s and lower 60s for highs early next week with lows remaining near 40.
The average high in Spokane for this time of year is 65 with an average low of 42.