Wednesday, December 13 – Newport, Oregon
Summary: An eye-popping sunset accompanied by the sound of clicking camera shutters capped our mostly cloudy Tuesday. Temperatures in the 40s and light winds drew residents out of their lairs, and visitors back to the beaches. As darkness closed in, the clear sky revealed the stunningly bright planet Venus low in the southwest and a waxing gibbous moon shining high in the southeast. This morning, we’re just above freezing, a few high clouds, and the east winds have picked up a little.
Past 24 hours high/low…
Lincoln City/Depoe Bay: 41F/34F
Forecast: Today is expected to be mostly sunny, high in the mid-40s, but stronger east winds will make it feel chillier. Low tonight under mostly clear skies in the mid-30s. Tomorrow is where everything changes. A Pacific storm system is forecast to move in with more than a capful of wind, southwest 20-25 knots gusting to 30, and a chance for a half inch of rain or more. Temperatures in the 40s. The sticky issue is how this incoming weather mixes with the cold air near the surface. Most of western Oregon is under a Special Weather Statement for freezing rain by late tomorrow. However, the Central Coast is currently excluded from this zone of worry. We’ll have a better handle on this dicey situation by tomorrow morning’s report. Outlook is for a showery Friday, followed by another less-potent storm system Saturday and Sunday.
Travel: Our links to the Valley, Highways 18, 20 and 34 have stretches of packed snow, icy spots and freezing fog. This morning, ODOT turned on the flashing “Carry chains or traction tires” signs on Highway 20 from Cline Hill to Dudlee Hill. Highway 18 has a similar situation at Murphy Summit in the Van Duzer corridor. Highway 34 is unrestricted, but still expect patches of ice and snow over Alsea Summit. Conditions deteriorate the farther east you go with freezing fog and more ice and snow in the travel lanes. Meanwhile, the most hazardous travel to Portland, Corvallis and other Valley destinations will be tomorrow when all areas are expected to receive freezing rain.
Marine: Today, E winds up a little to 10-15 knots, seas 3 feet. Becoming SE tonight 10-15 knots, seas 4 feet. Depoe Bay and Yaquina Bay bars are unrestricted. Tomorrow, the first storm system in a while changes ocean conditions dramatically with S winds ramping up to 20-25 knots gusting 30, a few gusts to 35, seas building to 8 feet. Tomorrow night, winds veering to SW 20-25 gusting 30, subsiding overnight, seas 10 feet. Outlook for Friday is W winds 10-25 knots, seas 10 feet. For weekend boaters, Saturday the winds should be down to S at 10-15 knots with seas 7 feet. Sunday, NW wind 10 knots, seas building to 12 feet.
On the Beach… Warmer, mostly sunny, a little east wind, surf 2-3 feet. California gray whale spotting is picking up with several seen yesterday along the Central Coast. More will be passing by each day now as the southern migration intensifies.
12/11 Wed 02:05 PM 1.24 L
12/11 Wed 08:13 PM 6.18 H
12/12 Thu 01:31 AM 2.53 L
12/12 Thu 08:05 AM 9.01 H
In Short: Sunny, then windy and wet, followed by showers.