KTTH OPINION

Cliff Mass explains where ‘there will be massive amounts of snow’

Feb 26, 2024, 7:34 PM | Updated: Feb 27, 2024, 8:42 am

Image: Mt. Baker is seen adorned with snow...

Mt. Baker is seen adorned with snow (Photo courtesy of KIRO 7)

(Photo courtesy of KIRO 7)

Just last week, Western Washington saw a whiff of spring with temperatures reaching above the average of 50 degrees this area usually sees at this time of year.

Cliff Mass, an atmospheric sciences professor at the University of Washington (UW), brought forward a much different forecast during his appearance Monday on The Jason Rantz Show on AM 770 KTTH.

Specifically, Mass brought attention to the significant precipitation the mountains are expected to see this week.

“One place that snow is certain — massive amounts of snow — is in the mountains,” Mass said. “We’re in an extremely favorable situation this week and before the week is over, some places in the mountains will have yards of new snow.”

Snowpack will rise thanks to this storm, which is great for skiers and good for those who have worried about the snowpack in the mountains.

“So, this is really important. The snowpack is now about 65% of normal around the state. Well. it’s not going to be (at) 65% by the end of this week. It’ll be probably up (around) 80% (or) something like that. So, there (will) be a lot of snow. (It will be) great for the ski season. So, that’s wonderful.”

Cliff Mass on state’s depleted snowpack: ‘We understand … it’s not climate change’

What kind of weather will the lowlands see?

When it comes to the lowlands, Mass thinks some people in the Puget Sound will see some snow. But he doesn’t expect the roads to turn white.

“You get to the question of lowland snow and I think some people will see some flakes, but I don’t expect … any kind of heavy accumulation. The first chance (is Monday night). The atmosphere is quite cold out there and it looks like there’ll be some precipitation … in the central Puget Sound.”

Mass explained that because the ground is relatively warm because it’s above freezing, it takes “quite a bit of snow” to really stick.

That said, Mass didn’t rule out parts of Snohomish County seeing a bit of accumulation.

“It could get whitened a little bit, especially in the higher elevations of Snohomish County, because the elevation goes up there a bit. So … from Lynnwood into (Everett’s) Paine Field They could have some. Also, if you go to (Kitsap County), there could be some there.”

More from Cliff Mass: ‘I don’t think they can say’ 2023 was the hottest year on record

Mass went on to emphasize that those who live or spend time in the mountains will see a lot of snow this week, pointing at Wednesday specifically.

“It’s going to be pretty bad up there in the mountains on Wednesday,” Mass said. “There (are) going to be problems. You’re gonna need chains, and they may even have to close the pass or two for a while. So, maybe apocalypse. Maybe not, but it’ll be it’ll be substantial.”

To listen to the entire interview, which also included Mass explaining why Western Washington has seen a recent cold snap, head here or click on the link below.

Listen to the Jason Rantz Show on weekday afternoons from 3-6 p.m. on KTTH 770 AM (HD Radio 97.3 FM HD-Channel 3). Subscribe to the podcast here. Follow Jason on X, formerly known as Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.

Jason Rantz on AM 770 KTTH
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Cliff Mass explains where ‘there will be massive amounts of snow’