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Weather or Not: An Extra Log on the Fire

Chris Burns Weather

Tuesday, Nov. 11th – Lincoln County

Summary: Mostly sunny skies, highs near 60F and light winds made yesterday another keeper. Whether or not our blooming azaleas and late-growing lawns realized it, humans could surely feel a slight nip in the air. Even with all-day full-on sunshine, the low Fall Sun angle kept thermometers near normal (which is 56F for November 10th). A few clouds reared-up toward evening and provided some lovely context for sunset photos, but skies cleared completely again shortly after dark and remained so overnight; the mercury dipped to the low-40s. The anticipated east wind arrived around 2:00am and was blowing 10-20 mph by daybreak. Arctic air is rapidly elbowing its way into Eastern Oregon this morning where Burns plunged to 14F.

Past 24 Hours High/Low…
Lincoln City: 56F/44F
Depoe Bay: 59F/40F
Newport: 57F/43F
Waldport: 59F/42F
Yachats: 58F/39F

Forecast: A National Weather Service Special Weather Statement remains posted for much colder temperatures area-wide beginning today. Cold and windy conditions are expected now through Thursday. There’s a possibility of Winter-like precipitation falling mainly in and near the Columbia River Gorge, but also in the northern Willamette Valley from Salem north to Portland. Although considerable uncertainty exists, confidence is growing that a low pressure system will move towards the Central Coast late Wednesday and spread precipitation over the area Wednesday evening into Thursday. There is a chance some combination of snow, sleet and freezing rain will fall during this period.

For the Central Coast on this Veterans Day, east winds will transport cooler temperatures to our area (see Weather Factoid below). Today is expected to be mostly sunny, highs about 50F and easterly winds building to 25-30 mph gusting 40. Ditto for the breeze WON SUN-WINDtonight, along with clear skies and lows dropping close to freezing, around 35F, so toss an extra log on the fire. Tomorrow, sunny and windy early followed by increasing clouds and winds shifting to southerly; rain is predicted to begin around dusk. While some parts of Western Oregon may see some freezing precipitation Wednesday night, it still looks like the Central Coast will not. Low temperatures of 35-40F should keep anything that falls here in liquid form. Outlook is for rainy and windy with seasonal temperatures Thursday through Saturday, and varying chances of rain into early next week.

Travel: In the Coast Range today, sunny, breezy and 45-50F. Valley destinations have a High Wind Warning in place until noon tomorrow and are expecting clear skies with highs of 45-50F. For the Cascades, mainly clear and very windy with gusts to 65 mph; the freezing level is at 4,000 feet, and there are spots of ice on the highway passes this morning. Outlook for travel on Wednesday and Thursday – motorists should be prepared for snow in the Cascades and possible Winter-like driving conditions elsewhere in Northwest Oregon. Cascade snow levels are projected to be around 3,500 feet Wednesday and Thursday; carry chains or traction tires. High profile vehicles will also need to use extra caution in strong east winds when traveling along I-84 between I-205 and Bonneville Dam, and over the Glen Jackson Bridge on I-205 in Portland during this period.

Marine: East winds are beginning to blow with a few gusts to 15 knots this morning, especially near shore; seas are 5 WON SCAfeet at 12 seconds. As of 7:00am, Depoe Bay and Yaquina Bay bars are unrestricted. A Small Craft Advisory for winds is in effect through Wednesday morning. Today, tonight and tomorrow, E winds 20-25 knots with a few gusts near 30 and W swells 6-9 feet. Outlook is for a switch to southerly winds 15-25 knots Wednesday night through Saturday and choppy seas rising to 8-11 feet.

On the Beach… Mostly sunny, breezy, cool, surf 3-4 feet (low).
* For a safe and enjoyable time on the Central Coast, the Oregon Parks & Recreation Department offers these Beach Safety Tips.
* Tides
11/11 Tue 08:41 AM 3.54 L
11/11 Tue 02:26 PM 7.91 H
11/11 Tue 09:25 PM 0.07 L
11/12 Wed 04:24 AM 7.00 H

In Short: Mainly clear, windy, much cooler, then warming with rain.

Weather Factoid: How come east winds drastically change our temperatures? An occasional easterly breeze does indeed bring large fluctuations in Central Coast thermometers; in fact, both ways – sometimes hot, sometimes cold. In Summer, hot high-pressure air from east of the Coast Range can at times rush west to fill a void created by lower pressure along the coast; temps soar. In Winter, this infrequent wind pattern can develop in a similar manner, but the high pressure east of us is bursting with cold air instead of hot; temps plummet. Outside of these generally short-lived and unique east wind events, temperatures here are moderated by the ocean. The prevailing westerly winds (northwest and southwest) reaching this area have been blowing steadily over sea surface temperatures in the 45-55F range, consequently our average thermometer readings are usually within about 10F of there. The dominant westerlies are also ordinarily strong enough to block the atmospheric set-up that allows east winds and abnormal temperatures to cross the coastal mountains.

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