West Seattle, Washington
6:55 AM: Good morning. One incident so far this morning – a stalled vehicle is partly blocking the HOV lane on the NB 1st Avenue South Bridge.
WATER TAXI: Back in service but with a vessel change – Spirit of Kingston on the West Seattle run, Doc Maynard on the Vashon Island run.
WEATHER: Below freezing this morning – so watch out for icy spots – and a chance of a little snow.
SCHOOL’S OUT: Mid-winter break week continues for Seattle Public Schools.
LIGHT-RAIL OPEN HOUSE: Missed last Tuesday’s Sound Transit open house in West Seattle? Or, have something more to say? Tonight is the third and final event in this early round – 5:30-7:30 pm at Union Station downtown (401 S. Jackson).
The storm’s gone – but not forgotten. Some scenes to share:
That photo is from today at Alki Beach, by David Hutchinson, who explains:
Lots of Alki Beach sand in motion yesterday. The wind blew a bunch off the surface to the south – including across Alki Ave, while the wave action removed about 2-3 feet beginning at the high-tide line. Assume that this will reinforce the offshore sandbars that are visible at low tides.
If you missed the north-wind-fueled wave action that caused it, here are reader videos showing what happened, starting with this one at sunset by Marie:
A little earlier, Bridget also caught the wind and waves:
Hours before that, Rachael recorded gulls in windsurfing mode:
And as wild as things got on Sunday, you might have forgotten that the morning weather was all about snow showers. Along Beach Drive, Lura recorded a great blue heron standing strong in the windblown snow – for a bit:
Thanks again to everyone sharing photos and videos; e-mail is always best – firstname.lastname@example.org – but if it’s easier, you can text to our hotline, too – 206-293-6302 – thank you!
(SCROLL DOWN for updates)
4:16 PM: Though the “wind advisory” expired hours ago, big gusts are causing big trouble right now.
We’ve been covering:
And now we’re getting word of other problems, including:
-Tree down on California north of Hamilton Viewpoint
Signal Light pole down on 35th at Brandon
Updates to come. And if something is happening where you are and we’re not on it yet, tips/photos appreciated (as always!) at 206-293-6302 – thank you! And stay safe.
4:27 PM: This appears to be the light pole a texter mentioned, down on the west side of 35th SW just north of Brandon:
No traffic effects (but be careful in general because branches are down on some streets).
4:44 PM: And here’s a really BIG blockage:
That’s on California just uphill from Harbor. If you are turning uphill, you can see the problem AND you can detour to Ferry, but if you are coming downhill, right now there’s no warning until you are almost all the way to the blockage – hopefully there will be police and/or signage soon by Hamilton Viewpoint. No crew on scene yet working to clear the trees, either. We tagged SDOT when tweeting this photo in case they hadn’t heard, and they say they’re alerting their Safety Response Team.
4:57 PM: Just in via text, a tree down in North Delridge.
The texter says the tree came down on private property, from the 4th hole of West Seattle Golf Course, and damaged “decks, fences, and a hot tub.”
5:49 PM: Thanks to Colby for the tip that there’s another outage, a little over an hour old, along part of Roxbury near 28th/26th – that’s affecting Roxbury Safeway. We’ll check there in a bit. Not far from there – not wind-related but in case you wondered – 15th SW in White Center is blocked just north of SW 100th because of a driver-vs.-pedestrian incident.
6:34 PM: Roxbury Safeway has some power but exterior lighting is off and cold cases are draped over. Meantime, the outage affecting our HQ and other areas east of Lincoln Park – in Gatewood and Upper Fauntleroy – is now up to 371 customers, per the City Light map. And yet more tree trouble:
Marc near 46th SW/SW Hanford tweeted the photo and reported, “Half the neighbors’ big leaf maple just fell in our yard!”
8:33 PM: Yet more tree trouble. Eileen reports this scene along Glenn Way:
She says, “Not blocking the road – just the sidewalk. Partially covering a couple of parked cars.”
9:52 PM: 8th hour without power. But there’s progress – we saw City Light crews nearby. Also saw crews at the California blockage just up from Harbor Avenue. The tree trouble isn’t over, though – we’ve also heard of one down near 44th and Admiral, and another one in Sunrise Heights. (Added Monday morning – reader photo of the 44th/Admiral tree)
No reports of injuries so far. Meantime, just checked the real-time 911 log and a transformer fire is reported in the 3200 block of Walnut.
10:07 PM: … and the transformer-fire call is already closed. The forecast, meantime, is now for the wind to diminish after midnight. And the next three nights are still projected to have lows in the 20s.
10:16 PM: SDOT says the trees blocking California just up from Harbor are now cleared and the road is open again.
10:53 PM: Tree trouble on Pigeon Point – N. James says this one fell along 22nd SW north of Andover:
N. James sent that – they called 911, but it was determined that the road is not blocked and while some wires are hanging over the street, they’re “high enough for a normal-height vehicle to pass, but trucks may not.”
6:29 AM: We updated the power-outages report overnight but just to note here as well, no major outages remain – a couple small pockets. (The biggest outage was in our area, Upper Fauntleroy/west Gatewood/east of Lincoln Park, 371 customers, restored after 11 hours, around 1:30 am.)
Resurgent snow shower. pic.twitter.com/VCxMAlRa8n
— West Seattle Blog (@westseattleblog) February 18, 2018
(Snow-shower video recorded just after 12:30 pm)
8:26 AM: Thanks for the texts! We’ve heard from Highland Park, The Junction, and Jacobsen Road so far, as very light snow falls around West Seattle – seeing it here in Upper Fauntleroy too. As noted in weather updates earlier in the weekend, forecasters don’t expect much accumulation. But SDOT was out treating roads last night just in case – lots of salt on our hill, which is at 300′. No current alerts for our area; the forecast mentions “scattered snow showers (this) morning.”
9:21 AM: Over for now, and some sunshine has emerged.
12:02 PM: Now another shower – more ice pellet/graupel-like than snowflakes.
12:37 PM: The National Weather Service now thinks the snow showers won’t go past 4 pm.
7:01 PM: The wind alert is an hour away from expiring – but it’ll still be breezy, and that’s brought another weather alert: A Coastal Flood Advisory for 4 am-8 am. From the alert:
Minor flooding along the beaches is possible early Sunday morning–mostly because of the action of wind waves around the time of high tide which is around daybreak on Sunday.
High tide will be about one foot below the typical highest tide but windy weather and waves could cause some minor flooding along the beaches because of the waves.
High tide in this area will be 12 feet at 6:46 am Sunday. Meantime, you might have heard some talk of snow. In Seattle, it’s possible after midnight, according to the newest forecast, but not expected to total more than an inch.
11:11 PM: Just back from basketball coverage in Bellevue, and noticed the streets have been salted up here at 300 feet. It’s 10 degrees above freezing, still, so quite a ways to go before we are anywhere near snow mode. But whenever you see some, please let us know – text/call our hotline, 206-293-6302, 24/7 – thank you!
8:15 AM: Thanks for the texts! Light flurry here in Upper Fauntleroy, and texters are seeing a bit in The Junction and Highland Park too. If it goes on for a bit longer we’ll start a separate story.
The National Weather Service has made some changes to the Wind Advisory alert for today, first issued Friday morning. See the new version here. It’s now in effect 9 am-6 pm, and at the heart of it, “Southerly winds will increase to 20 to 35 mph with gusts near 45 mph about midday.” Strongest winds are expected this afternoon, and power outages are possible, so keep everything charged, and look around outside for anything that could cause a problem if blown around.
There’s been a lot of talk about wintry weather this weekend, but the only official National Weather Service alert for our area so far is one that warns of wind – 7 am-7 pm Saturday, a “wind advisory” with gusts possible up to 45 mph. See the full advisory here.
Thanks for the photos! Above, Jim Spraker‘s view of the sunset; below, Lynn Hall‘s look at The Brothers in the sunshine, and JayDee’s wider morning view of the Olympics.
With clearing skies, temperatures are already into the 30s, and the forecast warns of a “chance of rain and snow showers in the morning.”
… as soon as we saw a hint of sun and a glimpse of the Olympics’ famous peaks The Brothers, we ran out with the camera. The enthusiasm is justified by these stats:
Seattle had a total of 30 days in January that were either cloudy (22) or partly cloudy (8). Good news! It's February…so the most we can rack up this month is 28. #wawx
— NWS Seattle (@NWSSeattle) February 1, 2018
But if you’re no big fan of cold weather, you might have enjoyed January – the NWS also tweeted that only one day had a low temperature below freezing.
1 AM: Just in case you wondered … yes, that was thunder, and lightning. So far we’ve seen at least two big bolts to the west, not long after a short but major downpour. While the basic forecast didn’t mention thunderstorms, they were in the regional “forecast discussion.”
6:40 AM: Thanks for the tip – the City Light map says almost 100 Arbor Heights homes lost power overnight because of a downed tree. The current projected restoration is around 8 am.
7:22 AM Power’s back.
7:11 PM: Passing Don Armeni Boat Ramp just before sunset tonight, on our way back from the Alki kitchen fire, we noticed many photographers awaiting the rise of the “supermoon,” aka the Wolf Moon. Thanks to those who have shared the images that resulted – above, from David Hutchinson; below, from Chris Frankovich:
The next full moon also will be a “supermoon” – moonrise that night will be at 5:42 pm. In the meantime, this moon is scheduled to set after 8 am tomorrow – could be a good show if the western sky isn’t cloudy.
ADDED 8:32 PM: Thanks to Susan Numbers for this later view:
And to Jamie Kinney for a close-up look at the star of the show:
ADDED 9:36 PM: Just received this from Jon Shields, who photographed the supermoon from Anchor Park:
As West Seattle’s expert skywatcher Alice Enevoldsen points out, January 31st also will bring a lunar eclipse – partial in our area.
8:31 PM: Thanks to Peter Commons for catching the last sunset and moonrise of the year in one reflective scene. The official full moon is tomorrow – and that’ll be followed by “king tides” of 13 feet (or slightly higher) on Wednesday (13.1′ at 6:26 am), Thursday (13.2′ at 7:11 am), Friday (13.2′ at 7:55 am), and Saturday (13′ at 8:39 am).
ADDED 9:52 PM: Thanks to Alice Enevoldsen for the moon-halo photo, taken in Arbor Heights:
Alice explains that this is caused by ice crystals high in the sky – more info here.
FRIDAY NIGHT: Those Seattle Parks vehicles are the only hint you’ll see in the 1300 block of Alki Avenue SW that there’s a slide behind one of the residential buildings across the street. We got a tip tonight (thank you!) about the slide. The Parks crews explained that it’s on a city-owned slope, and they are trying to access it to assess what’s happened. (The tipster said it was affecting one building’s rear entry but we weren’t able to get a look.) Parks says it’s the same area as a past slide; our archives show one in the same block in November of last year.
SATURDAY AFTERNOON: By daylight, here’s how the slide aftermath looks from a nearby building’s driveway:
Looks like a windy night ahead, according to a National Weather Service alert issued this morning – a Wind Advisory for sustained wind up to 30 mph and gusts up to 45 mph, expected between 6 pm tonight and 4 am tomorrow. So make sure everything’s charged. And check around outside for anything in danger of getting blown around.
Thanks to WSB reader photos, we’ve been able to show you many views of this first West Seattle “white Christmas” in nine years – but none like these! Trileigh Tucker photographed these jewel-like closeup views of snowflakes last night.
That snowflake was caught on a strand of spider web.
Beautiful – but when not glimmering on the shrubbery, it’s potentially treacherous, since night is falling, with a forecast low below freezing, so what’s left on the roads and sidewalks is likely to turn to ice. Hope you can stay home, cozy, safe, and warm.
11:57 AM: Thanks for the photos and video! The snow just stopped, again, with more than 2″ officially on the ground, 20 hours after the first flakes, and it’s time to take a good long look before the great meltdown (already four degrees above freezing where we are). Here’s an aerial view:
A view from the water, passing Alki on a ferry to Bremerton:
— Ravenna Blog (@RavennaBlog) December 25, 2017
(Video tweeted by Rebecca @ravennablog)
Back on land, first chance in a while for some serious snowman-building:
And contemplation of peaceful scenes, like this one in Morgan Junction:
And in North Delridge:
Along Admiral Way:
In Highland Park:
And in Seaview:
That photo was texted by Kevin, as was this:
Maybe if Al‘s cat Star knew there were “snow rats,” it wouldn’t have been such a difficult decision about going outside:
By the way, if you find (or lose) a pet today – or any other day of the year – remember that our West Seattle Lost/Found Pets page is here, and you can e-mail us info (with a photo if you have one) at email@example.com. Same address for snow photos, road info, whatever, or text 206-293-6302 … thank you!
ADDED 4:13 PM: Two more photos – the snow as it fell last night:
And another snow creation:
That one arrived only with the caption: “52nd Avenue snow.” (Added 5:21 pm) We’ve since learned that’s the skull’s sculptor, Sean Devenney, in the photo.
Before we move on to Christmas Day coverage – you might be wondering how much snow fell, and whether we’ll see more. The National Weather Service says the official Christmas Eve total measured at Sea-Tac was 1.6 inches.
That would place this at #3 on the NWS’s list of recorded Christmas Eve snowfalls:
1. 2.6″ 2008
2. 2.5″ 1926
3. 1.6″ 2017
4. 1.5″ 1911
5. 0.8″ 1965
6. 0.4″ 1902
7. 0.3″ 1971
The NWS says we could see up to one more inch of snow this morning – the Winter Weather Advisory remains in effect until 10 am. After that? Here’s the forecast: Rain and snow showers possible this afternoon; then a cold, cloudy night; and Tuesday has another chance of snow showers before (relatively) warmer rain returns later in the week.
ADDED MONDAY NIGHT: Historic!
For the first time in over 120 years of records Seattle had at least 1" of snow on both Christmas Eve and Christmas. Official snowfall amounts for Seattle-Tacoma airport 1.6" on the 24th and 1.0" on the 25th. #wawa #wasnow #whitechristmas2017
— NWS Seattle (@NWSSeattle) December 26, 2017
And we could see a little more Tuesday night.
2:58 PM: It’s light – but it’s snow. Thanks for the texts – we’ve heard from High Point, and we’re seeing light snow here on the Fauntleroy/Gatewood line, too.
3:06 PM: We’re hearing from points north, too, including The Junction. And even before the snow arrived, SDOT had sent a media advisory saying it “has increased crews for night shift deployment, and will continue to monitor, evaluate and treat Seattle roads this evening accordingly.”
3:28 PM: It’s sticking – on cars, rooftops, roadsides.
4:29 PM: That’s changing. Photo texted from near California/Hanford:
Be careful if you’re driving somewhere post-game. Meantime, one more pre-dusk scene, from Kim at Alki:
Snow looks to be about half an inch deep where we are.
5:26 PM: Continuing to snow lightly. SDOT reports a crash at 30th/Brandon; apparently no injuries, as there’s no SFD dispatch. Up here, snow on the road, though not deep:
Still lightly snowing. pic.twitter.com/2D5M5KwcKZ
— West Seattle Blog (@westseattleblog) December 25, 2017
5:57 PM: Road report from WSB’s Christopher Boffoli:
I just drove back to the peninsula from Capitol Hill and I thought I’d give you a quick street report. I-5 appears to have been salted and is just wet. Traffic was light. No issues there (including on and off ramps which were fine. In my short ten minute drive I did see state plows on the freeway (though with plows up as they weren’t needed). The West Seattle bridge was mostly wet with a bit of frosty slush building up around the Delridge exit.
City streets are a different story. Most of the city streets have a light coating of snow and are pretty slick. I have an all wheel drive car – which is very sure-footed – but I definitely stepped on the brakes hard once or twice to test it and I was able to break the tires free and slide very easily. I also saw a car on Hanford, on the hill just east of California, sideways with hazards on. I didn’t see any SDOT salters or sanders at all. So I’d recommend that people exercise caution, slow down, and leave themselves plenty of distance between other cars and avoid the steeper hills if you can at this point.
We mentioned a 30th/Brandon crash earlier; we’ve since heard police (via scanner) mention closure signs on that hill, which goes between Delridge and High Point [map].
6:57 PM: Metro just sent an alert that its South Seattle area – which includes West Seattle – is on snow routes. (Find yours here.)
7:45 PM: Sue texted to say that Westside Unitarian Universalist Congregation in Gatewood has canceled its 9 pm candlelight service because of the weather. (Anyone else with changes/cancellations? Let us know so we can add.) Meantime, Vika tweeted this West Seattle snowman photo:
8:11 PM: Light snow is still falling, and we’d gauge it at about an inch deep here on the Fauntleroy/Gatewood line.
9:44 PM: Hills continue to be the trouble spots on roads. A texter sent photos of cars that got into trouble on – and off – the SW Spokane hill by 48th earlier this evening:
We will be starting a new story soon for late night/early morning info, since this one has been running since mid-afternoon.
You’ve been hearing talk of possible Christmas Eve/Day snow for days – and now the National Weather Service has issued an alert saying it’s looking quite likely. From the “Winter Weather Advisory” alert, which will be in effect 7 pm tonight through noon tomorrow:
… Snow expected. Plan on road conditions becoming slippery tonight. Total snow accumulations of up to 3 inches expected with the higher amounts in locations around 500 feet and above with less than an inch near the water. …
The highest elevation within city limits – near the 35th/Myrtle reservoir – is just over 500 feet. Meantime, let us know if/when you see snow – 206-293-6302 text or voice – thanks!
(Photo by David Hutchinson -Olympics, Puget Sound, and vehicle carrier Midnight Sun on Wednesday)
We’ve seen the snow on the mountains – and maybe as soon as tonight/early tomorrow, we might see some here in the lowlands. So says the National Weather Service, and if not this round, maybe Christmas Eve/Day – and/or maybe after that. The big word is “maybe,” as the newest Forecast Discussion explains, and there’s a Special Weather Statement too. They are NOT talking major snow – maybe just a “dusting” – but still … if and when you see snow, our 24-hour hotline, text or voice, is 206-293-6302 – thank you!
It’s a spectacular sunny day, with the Olympic Mountains fully in view, and James Bratsanos shared these photos. So we are sharing them in turn while we head out to check on a few stories. Here’s his view north to Alki Point:
And more Olympics.
Looks like clear skies at least through winter’s official arrival tomorrow.
7 AM: Good morning! It’s the week before Christmas, and school’s out. No incidents in/from West Seattle reported so far.
7:35 AM: WSDOT reports a crash on NB I-5 near Seneca.
8:11 AM: Crash reported at Admiral/Olga.
9:05 AM: If you monitor regional news, you have likely heard about the Amtrak derailment that has closed I-5 in south Pierce County. Washington State Ferries is warning that its system traffic might increase as people divert.
10:19 AM: The current closure is southbound and per WSP expected to continue through the day.