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Storm could bring up to a foot of snow to Cascades, parts of Siskiyous

 Posted: 10:05 AM February 18, 2014

A strong storm system is inbound for Southern Oregon, bringing up to a foot of snow to the Cascades and parts of the Siskiyous, the National Weather Service reported this morning.

Between 6 inches and a foot of snow is expected to start falling this afternoon, starting at 5,000 feet elevation and dropping to about 2,500 feet during the night. A winter weather advisory also will be in effect for the Siskiyous and southern Cascades in areas above 5,000 feet from 4 p.m. today through 4 a.m. Wednesday.

The affected area includes the Siskiyou Summit, though weather officials say the amount of snow that falls will be significantly less, around 2 to 3 inches. The area of heaviest snowfall is estimated to be around Mount McLoughlin north.

"(But) we are expecting snow further south with this front as it comes in," said meteorologist Brett Lutz.

Snow-starved Mount Ashland is expected to get between 3 to 6 inches of snow as the front pushes through.

This means rainfall for the Rogue Valley floor, with precipitation expected to begin at 7 p.m.

"Later in the evening is when most of it's going to come in," Lutz said, adding parts of Ashland could see some snow mixed in with the rain.

High winds likely will accompany the snowfall in the higher elevations, creating potentially dangerous driving conditions and reduced visibility for motorists on parts of highways 140, 62, 230 and 138 because of falling and blowing snow, weather officials said. A high wind warning and wind advisory will be issued for Klamath County starting at 4 p.m. today and potentially concluding by 1 a.m. Wednesday. Weather officials are encouraging drivers heading into the hills to stay up-to-date on road conditions by visiting www.tripcheck.com.

Following the front, weather officials say conditions are expected to go back to quiet, with temperatures potentially scratching at the low 60s by Saturday.

— Ryan Pfeil


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