PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — The chance for lightning increases across the Portland metro area and Cascades late Thursday night into Friday morning. This latest round of lightning activity will increase the chance to see wildfire activity across western Oregon and Washington.

Thunderstorms are expected to build over central Oregon late Thursday night and move north through Friday morning. A low pressure system just offshore is the reason for the potentially electric skies Portland could see by Friday morning.

These thunderstorms aren’t expected to last long and will be isolated in nature. That means, not everyone will see lightning or hear thunder by sunrise Friday. If anything, the chance of rain will be a welcome sight with an added bonus of a few flashes of lightning or two over Oregon before sunrise.

Forecast rain totals for western Oregon and Washington with Friday morning’s thunderstorm potential

This lightning potential also increase the threat of wildfire activity over the Cascades of Oregon and Washington. Hot and dry conditions have helped dry out vegetation of the densely forested areas across the Pacific Northwest. The National Weather Service has issued a ‘Red Flag Warning‘ that remains in effect through Friday morning.

Lightning increase the wildfire threat for the Cascades Thursday night into Friday morning

Lightning also poses a threat to those running in the Hood to Coast event Friday morning. Runners will begin on Mt. Hood during the early morning hours. That’s when the chance of thunderstorms over the Cascades is at its highest.

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As runners descend in elevation, temperatures will begin to climb. Afternoon highs are expected to sit in the low to mid 90s Friday afternoon in Portland.