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Winter storm watch issued

REPUBLIC - Batten down the hatches and dig out the snow shovel.

The Spokane office of the National Weather Service has issued a winter storm watch for much of the region.

"A pair of moist Pacific storm systems will impact the region Thursday and Thursday night and again Friday and Friday night,” meteorologists said Wednesday morning. “The mountains ringing the Columbia Basin will accumulate impressive amounts of snow during this period. The valleys also have the potential to experience heavy snow accumulations.”

Locally, the warning is in effect for Boulder Creek Road, Chesaw Road, Conconully, Inchelium, Kettle Falls, Loup Loup Pass, Mazama, Republic, Sherman Pass, Twisp, Wauconda, , Highway 20 Wauconda Summit and Winthrop.

Officials are calling for valley snow accumulations of 8 to 13 inches, and mountain accumulations of 2 to 3 feet.

The Weather Service has also issued a hazardous weather outlook for the Okanogan Valley.

“A series of storm systems will impact the area Thursday through Friday,” meteorologists said. “On Friday a messy change-over to eventual rain will occur with a mix of rain and snow and pockets of sleet and freezing rain mainly during the morning and early afternoon with mostly rain by late afternoon.”

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