OKANOGAN While a layer of snow blanketed much of Okanogan and Ferry County in the early morning hours today, the National Weather Service is calling for an additional round of snowfall tonight and tomorrow.
“Wednesday night and Thursday a second and wetter storm system quickly follows the storm system that brought the Inland Northwest light to moderate snow this morning,” a statement from the service said. “This system will be capable of producing several hours of freezing rain and significant ice accumulations in the lee of the Cascades including the Wenatchee River, Waterville Plateau and the Highway 97 corridor between Wenatchee and Omak.”
Meteorologists said pockets of freezing rain will be possible in the valleys throughout Okanogan County with heavy snow accumulation in some locations.
“Heavy snow is likely in the mountains and northern Valleys including the Methow Valley, portions of the Okanogan Valley and the Okanogan Highlands; especially close to the international border,” meteorologists said. “The heaviest precipitation will fall Wednesday night through Thursday afternoon with mountain snow continuing into Thursday evening.”
Locally, the service has issued a winter storm watch for Badger Mountain Road, Brewster, Bridgeport, Boulder Creek Road, Chesaw Road, Conconully, Disautel Pass, Inchelium, Loup Loup Pass, Mansfield, Mazama, Nespelem, Omak, Okanogan, Oroville, Republic, Sherman Pass, Stehekin, Twisp, Waterville, Wauconda, Wauconda Summit (Highway 20) and Winthrop.
The service is calling for four-inches of snow accumulation with local amounts near eight-inches in the highlands and near the international border.
“The heaviest snowfall is expected between 11 p.m. (tonight) and 4 a.m. (tomorrow),” the service said. “Snow may change to – or mix with – light freezing rain overnight around Wenatchee and southern Douglas County.”
The service said the storm could lead to a combination of significant ice accumulations and moderate snow could lead to downed trees, downed limbs, power outages and “treacherous driving” conditions.