Forecast update: Tracking heavy rain, possible thunderstorms


PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) – Light rain started Wednesday and the wet weather is going to be on and off through the remainder of the week.

Right now we have a good handle on just about how much rain we should receive and where some of the heavier spots are going to be. Clouds covering the Willamette Valley and Oregon coast trail all the way to the southwest with broken clouds behind the front showing off a little of the ocean.

Now let’s turn that over to what is going on under those clouds and that is going to be the rain. As this cold front continues to press to the east. This is an idea of the shower activity come Wednesday afternoon and early evening that includes heavy rain to the north for areas of Washington with fragmented showers to the south and less organization. Where the rain is going to be the most consistent, will be the locations with the higher totals.

As of right now, we have accumulated .44 inches of rain during our September month. Not much at all. Notice on average we have at least one .50 inch event in Portland. There is a good change that today is the day that we top that or later in the week and into the weekend.

Will we break a record today? I don’t think we will. The current record is .86 inches and I believe the rain that will provide something like that is going to stay to the north of Portland. I think we are closer to the .50 inch mark by the time we wrap up the day. That is doubling our monthly total and will likely be a helping hand for ongoing wildfire conditions.

As I mentioned, those of you to the north will likely see superior totals compared to those farther south in the Willamette Valley. Areas like Seattle may find the total rain today to be well beyond 1.00 inch. The Oregon coast will see the wettest day they’ve had this month too. Areas like Astoria down to Tillamook may push 1.50 inches of rain by midnight. I think it is possible that some light rain makes it east of the Cascades but I wouldn’t count on much with this system Wednesday. Friday will likely bring in more rain because of the trajectory and potential for more rain.

I want to discuss the chance for a few thunderstorms this afternoon and Thursday. There does appear to be a minor threat for maybe a rumble of thunder or a heavier downpour this afternoon. The larger threat is to the north, but there appears to be some energy to work with around the Willamette Valley. I wouldn’t count on much, but remember you may want to just inside for 15-20 minutes to avoid some of the heavier rain if you see it pick up for a second. We will have updates this evening.

BY THE WAY! If you’re interested in the shape of a raindrop (it’s not what you may think), you should give this weather lesson a go!

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