Summer heat brings thunderstorm chance for central, eastern Oregon

Weather

PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) – Temperatures have been spiking this week for much of the Willamette Valley, and that goes for the overnight temperatures as well, but we have seen some cloudy spots on the Oregon Coast.

If you check out the loop of the visible satellite through mid-day Wednesday, you can see how the clouds that did migrate east overnight in the channels of the coast range have dissipated out to the coast. There may be a few spots that have to battle clouds into the afternoon, but the northern Oregon Coast will be more visible and open than those farther to the south.

Check out the difference from Lincoln City up to Seaside at lunchtime. The marine layer is impacting the coast and temperature in Lincoln City, where the temperature will build under blue sky in Seaside. Those clouds will dissipate and you should anticipate sunshine coming your way.

With all the summer heat and sunshine that we are receiving right now, we have plenty of energy to work with.

As our cooler air aloft subtly moves in, it will allow for an isolated thunderstorm to develop this afternoon and evening. The potential for that is expected around the central Cascades and out through the high desert.

The thunderstorm potential graphic below will show the general scope of concern as far as the location of developing thunderstorms. Deschutes County and the central Cascades are the areas I would be most concerned about heading into this afternoon. These storms may bring in some hail or gusty conditions. We are not expecting thunderstorms to develop in the valley or out to the Oregon coast.

Weather models have the genesis of those storms right around Deschutes county in the evening. This is as concern because we know how dry it is and any bit of lightning or gusty wind can be a real problem under conditions like this. This week is not an ideal week for burning. Conditions cool and the relative humidity will increase this weekend, but the overall dry conditions will not change.

Thursday will actually be the day that the thunderstorm potential increases into a marginal risk. This may impact Pendleton, but it will be more of an open bottle around Baker City. It’s not very often that we have marginal risks, which means we are likely going to have a strong storm or two develop Thursday as the ridge of high pressure shifts east and that cooler air moves in our direction. These storms may bring in hail, gusty wind, lightning and bursts of rain.

The future radar is depicting that development Thursday evening, which may impact your travel or outdoor activities in the higher country over by Joseph, Oregon. A reminder to head indoors if you hear thunder and to just stay inside until that thunderstorm passes.

Learn about convective storms here.

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