(WSB photo from 2009 – slide behind condo building in 1200 block of Alki SW)
If you live in a potential slide zone – it’s time to take note and take precautions: Seattle Public Utilities says the wet weather has brought our area to the brink of what’s considered slide season, which means time for a few important reminders:
With more than an inch of rainfall forecast for Seattle over the next two days, the city is expected to cross the official U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) landslide threshold for the first time this year.
“Historically, the end of October is the start of landslide season,” said Seattle Public Utilities (SPU) meteorologist James Rufo-Hill, who writes a blog on local weather conditions. “Despite the fact that we have yet to experience widespread flooding or soil saturation this season, October is already much wetter than normal, so it shouldn’t be much of a surprise that landslide season is here.”
(Photo by James Bratsanos)
8:26 PM: This year of sunset spectacles just doesn’t end. Thanks to everyone who’s sent photos of tonight’s painted sky – this is the start of a mini-gallery.
(Photo by Mark Dale)
Adding a few more shortly. The rain’s back tomorrow, and who knows when we’ll see this again!
ADDED 9:18 PM: Click ahead for more (or scroll, if you’re viewing this from the standalone story page and not the home page)
On the second morning after Saturday night’s windstorm, some scattered outages persist. Seattle City Light‘s map shows 379 homes/businesses still without electricity around its service area. And while other types of utilities don’t have comparable maps that we know of, we know of at least one other outage – because we’re part of it; CenturyLink isn’t working yet in our area (a few blocks east of south Lincoln Park) and told us (inquiring as customers) that “repairs are under way.” Anyone else?
5:09 PM: Are you still without power? Seattle City Light says in an update for media around its service area that it’s “restored power to all but 803 customers who lost power during (the) windstorm. The customers who remain without power are likely connected to smaller side lines. These lines involve fewer buildings and are often the hardest to repair. We estimate that crews will restore these connections late tonight or early into Monday morning. If your home is not connected, please call 206-684-3000 so that we can restore power.” At the peak of the outages, more than 52,000 homes/businesses in City Light’s service area were reported without electricity; an exact West Seattle count was pretty much impossible because of how the SCL map displays outages, but, starting with the 120-home outage along Beach Drive reported before 8 pm, we calculated more than 10,000 in WS were among those who lost electricity at one point or another.
7:50 PM: Commenters checking in from Gatewood say they’ve been without power going on 24 hours now. The official map shows multiple spots still out around West Seattle as part of the 600 homes/businesses still out service-area-wide. Most outages are blamed on trees hitting wires.
10:43 PM: Updates from comments – Seola is back, Glenridge/Gatewood still out. It’s not on the map, either. A new outage is – not in our area, and not related to the storm, SCL says – more than 3,000 customers in Tukwila/Boulevard Park.
11:50 PM: Thanks for the continued updates in comments. Glenridge/Gatewood is back on, but now there’s a new outage reported, west of Westwood Village. Not on the map so no idea of the extent, but if you’re affected, be sure to call City Light- outage hotline 206-684-7400 – even if you think someone else has reported it.
(Added: WSB photo, trees blocking sidewalk, southbound Fauntleroy by The Kenney)
7:18 AM: As dawn breaks, hundreds of West Seattleites (including us) are among the 14,000 listed by Seattle City Light as still without power.
We’ll be updating that and cleanup – of trees and debris – as the day unfolds. Thanks to everyone who shared updates from their neighborhoods during as-it-happened coverage last night, and please let us know what you’re dealing with today. The forecast indicates the worst of the weather is past. Meantime, for those wondering, the West Seattle Junction Harvest Festival is still on as scheduled, 10 am-2 pm. We’ll have the daily “what’s happening” list up by 8:30 am, and it leads the way.
8:14 AM UPDATE: If you’re without power and/or cable/internet service, please be sure you’ve reported it (again, if necessary) – things are still in flux; we’ve noticed the City Light map jumped from 14,000 out to 18,000 out in the past hour or so (service-area-wide) – and please note that even if there is an estimate listed for restoration, it’s just a guesstimate, and SCL will be the first to tell you that; ours, for example, originally was guesstimated at 2 am-ish, and now that’s pushed back to 2 pm-ish. If you’re looking to watch the Seahawks game – most affected by the outage are residential, not business, so there’s LOTS of places to watch. WSB sponsor Feedback Lounge, for one.
8:35 AM UPDATE: Via Twitter, Comcast acknowledges outages and says they’re deploying generators “where it will help.”
10:13 AM UPDATE: Be careful when you’re out there – trees are still blocking roads and sidewalks, like the ones that came down in front of The Kenney (WSB sponsor) – we added a photo atop this story – in the 7100 block of Fauntleroy. The wind did other damage – this photo is via Twitter:
— Jacob Cristobal (@jacobcristobal) October 26, 2014
That building’s been undergoing renovations.
11:14 AM: City Light still lists 2,100 without power in its service area. Parts of Gatewood and Upper Fauntleroy (including our HQ) are among the last big pockets in West Seattle. And while the wind has mostly passed – the rain hasn’t (big shower right now while the Harvest Festival continues in The Junction).
12:13 PM: Important reminder from Stephanie:
REMINDER!!! When the lights are out you must treat like a 4-way stop. People are blowing through the light out at 35th and Webster on 35th. I fear an accident (although I guess the fire station is super close).
Also, we heard earlier today from Samantha in the 6000 block of 46th SW, looking to get some help dismantling a big tree that came down.
If you have a chainsaw, she said, you can have some of the firewood, and lunch. Caveat: It’s been a while since we first heard from her and our mention of this was delayed but if you’re in the neighborhood, maybe go check!
1:37 PM: Samantha posted an update in comments – the tree’s been cut up but there’s still some firewood to be had. Meantime, branches are still falling from trees – look what this dashcam caught:
We hear power is back in a few more neighborhoods including ours – we’ll be heading home from the Harvest Festival shortly and will report back. City Light tweeted earlier that some in the service area might not be back until early tomorrow.
2:40 PM: Back from the Harvest Festival and can verify that the map is accurate as least so far as our neighborhood goes.
(NO POWER? BE SURE CITY LIGHT KNOWS: 206-684-7400, OUTAGE HOTLINE)
(One of several photos @Naurthon tweeted showing tree blocking part of Delridge near Home Depot)
7:55 PM: Minutes before the National Weather Service‘s “high wind warning” for our area was originally to officially take effect, the wind is already gusting big time, at least where we are, and lights have flickered numerous times. We’re already seeing the first West Seattle power outage – about 120 people along Beach Drive. We’ll be covering this throughout the night – please let us know of any problems where you are – email@example.com, text or voice at 206-293-6302.
8:10 PM: Tree reported to have fallen on a house in the 5600 block of SW Admiral Way – no one hurt. We’re en route. (Update: Couldn’t find it.) Also, a power outage is reported in Gatewood, but not on the map yet – the map grab above still just shows the one on Beach Drive, which is blamed on a tree (not sure where that one is).
8:30 PM: Thanks to everyone who’s commented/messaged with information on other spot outages – from Bonair to Puget Ridge to Highland Park. Remember that if you have to be out driving and happen onto a non-working signal – that’s a 4-way stop intersection. (added) Annie sends this photo of a tree down on 24th between Barton and Cambridge:
8:44 PM: Just heard a scanner report of a tree down on Delridge at 21st SW, blocking southbound lanes. And we have this photo via Twitter:
— Naurthon (@naurthon) October 26, 2014
Jeff tweets that a tree is down on Roxbury at 34th. Thanks again to everyone sharing info and photos.
9 PM: 55 outages are now reported around the city, affecting more than 22,000 homes and businesses. Several are now mapped in West Seattle – see here for the latest. If you lose/find a pet during the storm – or any other time – remember that for six years, WSB has had the only West Seattle-specific lost/found pets page – westseattleblog.com/pets; just added a dog found tonight. Meantime, in comments, flynlo has noted 48 mph gusts on Gatewood Hill.
(Added: SFD at wires-down site on SW Ida – WSB photo by Christopher Boffoli)
9:20 PM: Now, add outages in Arbor Heights – we saw the 35th/Roxbury signal go out as that happened – and Morgan Junction; Arroyos, too, per comments. The tree down on Roxbury, meantime, is at 32nd – we’ll have a photo shortly (update: tree photo courtesy Dustin Smith).
If you have to go out, slow down – our photographer said people were coming up on the tree way too fast for safety. Meantime, every gust seems to take more people out – some now out in Fauntleroy. Also, trees down in two spots in Highland Park, Andrea e-mails: “One heading down Highland Park (Way) just after Holden and the other on 9th right side northbound.”
9:45 PM: Power outage finally hit us in Upper Fauntleroy. We’re continuing to report with backup power and Internet. Wind still strong. Re: Roxbury tree, Joe Szilagyi shows us via Instagram that the Roxbury tree is being towed. Meantime, you’re probably wondering how long the power will be out. Even the “guesstimates” you might see on the City Light map are not reliable (and SCL acknowledges that). 52,000 homes and businesses are now out citywide, according to the map. *Or it could be sooner rather than later – commenter Petertut says power’s BACK in the 5900 block of Beach Drive.
— Naurthon (@naurthon) October 26, 2014
10:21 PM: Minutes after @naurthon tweeted that photo, he reported that the tree is clear and Delridge is open again in the SW Orchard vicinity. The weather *sounds* as if it’s calming a bit – we’re looking around to see if forecasters have any insight. This was only supposed to last until the early-morning hours, and we’re still counting on “all systems go” for the Harvest Festival in The Junction 10-2 tomorrow.
10:48 PM: Chet says a tree and wires are down on Fauntleroy Way north of Lincoln Park. Also a new report from Sharryn of a tree down by 35th/Roxbury. And Shane sent photos of two trees down along the street in the 2100 block of California SW.
We’re also adding the newest screengrab from the City Light map, showing the many outages on the peninsula – looks like more than 10,000 homes/businesses. Far more of the former than the latter – it appears The Junction has kept power, for example (“live” traffic cam image added, to prove it):
So if you need food/beverages, there’s one direction to head in.
(Added: Fauntleroy ferry dock – WSB photo by Christopher Boffoli)
11:15 PM: WSB’s Christopher Boffoli has been roving to see what’s happening where. He reports, “Pitch black from Morgan Junction all the way down past Lincoln Park. Ferry dock is still without power and is waiting for generators to arrive. They somehow still have one terminal open and they’re able to check people in (right side ticket booth). Ferry traffic is very light.” SCL has done some restoring – the total citywide is now down to 50,000. Meantime, trees aren’t just out in roads – Dianne in Admiral e-mailed, “My neighbor’s tree fell in 3 or 4 spots, and they are on top of my house, and hanging next to it. My Willow tree is badly damaged and I think my Maple is down. I’ll know more tomorrow morning. Very frightening.” Then a bit later:
— Ilona Berzups (@ilopix) October 26, 2014
Likely going to be much to clean up – branches and leaves in the streets and on the sidewalks … in the morning.
1:26 AM: City Light is making progress – the outage map now shows 38,000 customers (homes/businesses) without power around its coverage area, down from a peak past 52,000. We’re still out in Upper Fauntleroy after almost four hours.
Adding several photos from Christopher Boffoli’s travels checking out storm damage, including the one above, a fence knocked down on 37th SW.
5:10 AM UPDATE: Many are back on. Not us, yet.
7:07 AM: Same as above. We will launch a new story shortly. Meantime, the Harvest Festival is ON – The Junction didn’t even lose power last night.
7:32 AM: That new story is here.
FIRST REPORT, 6:58 AM: First, the National Weather Service canceled the “special weather statement” that had been up for our area. But now, early this morning, a new weather alert was announced, a “wind advisory” from 3 pm today until 6 am Sunday. See it here. The NWS says the strongest winds are expected this evening, out of the southwest, with gusts possibly up to 45-50 mph.
10 AM UPDATE: The time frame is moved back a bit: 6 pm tonight to 6 am tomorrow. Charge everything now, just in case!
1:13 PM UPDATE: Thanks to the commenters who point out that this is now a “high wind warning,” in effect for 8 pm tonight until 2 am tomorrow. Gusts could be as high as 60 mph. As longtime readers know, weather coverage is a specialty here, so you can count on updates here, whatever happens; please let us know what happens where you are, too. (Get our hotline in your phone for texting/calling – 206-293-6302 – thank you.)
Look what’s back! Gary Jones shares the photo of snow on the Olympic Mountains, first major sighting from West Seattle this fall. Other weather news: The “special weather statement” suggesting possibly strong wind tomorrow has been dropped. Areas east of Seattle are under a wind advisory for tonight/tomorrow, but the forecast for our area is now back down to just rainy and breezy through Saturday night. For Sunday’s West Seattle Junction Harvest Festival (next big preview later tonight), things still look calmer still – cloudy with only a chance of showers.
(Added 4:42 pm: Rainbow this afternoon, photographed by Julie)
3:39 PM: Weather experts (like West Seattleite @MetPatrick22) have been watching this for some days – and now the National Weather Service has issued a formal alert, in the form of a “special weather statement”: Looks like it’s going to get windy on Saturday. At this point, gusts aren’t expected past 45 mph, but they’re watching closely. Here’s the full text of the alert.
4:11 PM: Again, that’s just for the weekend, but things are a little crazy right now – burst of hail followed by major downpour.
Sunbreaks can strike at the most surprising times. So in case somehow the partial solar eclipse tomorrow afternoon becomes visible, you want to be prepared. For the past three days, Alice Enevoldsen of Alice’s Astro Info and Skies Over West Seattle fame has helped West Seattleites do just that, with pre-eclipse events at local Seattle Public Library branches. This afternoon, Alice was at Delridge Library coaching prospective eclipse-watchers through the creation of pinhole viewers (so you can experience the eclipse without damaging your eyes by looking at the sun). The photo was shared by the family of Raina (at center, with Alice at left and Chrissy the librarian at right). But even if the sun doesn’t make it through the clouds here, you’ll be able to check out the eclipse through webcasts.
Thanks to Carolyn Newman for sharing the beautiful photo from just before tonight’s sunset – she said it’s the first time she’d seen anything like that in 40 years of living on Harbor Avenue!
(Photo tweeted by Patrick Gerding, looking this way from Vashon ferry)
6:28 PM: We’re not seeing it in the forecast, but that is most definitely thunder rolling through – and lightning. No short-term alerts, either. Rainbows earlier, though!
7:02 PM: Seems to have quieted down. “Low level instability,” explains MetPatrick, via Twitter. Meantime, thanks for more photos from the sky sights before sunset – dark clouds behind the gleaming skyline, in this photo from Melody in Admiral:
The second rainbow seemed to emerge from the base of the main rainbow, in an unusual “V” configuration, as you can see in this photo from Russ:
7:11 PM: The National Weather Service, whose forecasts hadn’t mentioned thunderstorms, just tweeted: “Line of heavy showers and isolated thunderstorms from Sea-Tac to east of Enumclaw will move SE and weaken in the next hour.”
7:37 PM: The photo above is from Lise in High Point. In comments, Emily offers an explanation.
7:54 PM: One more rainbow view:
Don Brubeck caught that angle from Alki. Looking ahead in the forecast – Monday looks very rainy – get those storm drains cleared of leaves before the weekend’s out!
Two beautiful views to share tonight: Above, James Bratsanos‘ photo of tonight’s colorful sunset; below, Long Bach Nguyen‘s view of West Seattle after dark, photographed last night:
Thank you to both for allowing us to share these images!
ADDED: Moksha shared a panoramic view of the sunset that we just have to add:
As of 22 minutes ago, autumn has arrived! Above, our quick Instagram clip of Alice Enevoldsen talking astronomy and weather with the youngest attendees at her Solstice Park sunset watch – 22nd time she has led an equinox/solstice watch! (added) As usual, she brought a planetary prop:
Sometimes, the littlest detail attracts attention – like the armband with her name:
Color streaked the sky as Alice explained where the sun lines up for the equinox:
She answered a variety of questions, not just about the equinox – for example, she was asked questions about the official times of sunset and sunrise and how they’re determined – locally, for example, they don’t seem to take the Olympics into account, so she points out the sun usual disappears behind the mountains about ten minutes before the listed sunset moment. Between sunset watches, Alice writes about other astronomy news on her site AlicesAstroInfo.com, and every month or so, she writes a new edition of “Skies Over West Seattle” for WSB.
SUNSET, FROM ELSEWHERE IN WEST SEATTLE: Below, James Bratsanos shared the full-strength sunset view we didn’t quite get from Solstice Park (where the sun sets behind Lincoln Park’s beautiful forest this time of year):
(added) A few more sunset views have since come in:
(Photo copyright 2014, Eric Shalit/Box Turtle Design)
From John Bartell at Brace Point:
P.S. Looks like rain’s in store for the first day of fall.
(Photo by Greg)
Thanks to everyone who shared photos from tonight’s sunset. In addition to publishing a few for starters (and we’ll likely add to them later), here’s one more reminder that you are invited to watch TOMORROW’s sunset, minutes before the fall equinox arrives, with “Skies Over West Seattle” correspondent Alice Enevoldsen at Solstice Park – details here. Now, back to tonight’s showstopping sunset:
(Photo by Chris Frankovich)
The fiery pink intensified as the sun disappeared behind the Olympics:
(Photo by James Bratsanos)
The forecast suggests tomorrow’s sunset won’t be much like this one, but we hope to see you at Solstice Park anyway (if you haven’t already followed the link, note that Alice plans bonus info, including next month’s partial solar eclipse and the MAVEN Mars mission).
9:39 PM: Lots of questions about whether we have a chance of Northern Lights tonight, after their more-or-less no-show last night. Short answer seems to be “probably not.” We’re working late as usual and if that changes – we’ll update here.
But another sight in the sky has people abuzz from British Columbia to California – what’s believed to have been a meteor, streaking across the sky around 8:20 pm. We received one note even before noting the chatter on social media; Karen e-mailed to say, “Did you see that huge green meteor about five minutes ago? We just happened to be at the window as it came down.. have never seen one that big.” Anybody else? We’re looking around for images and info, and will update.
10:08 PM: We’ve put quotes around “meteor” since nobody is certain yet what it was – could also have been re-entering “space junk.” If you saw it, you can report it to the American Meteor Society (go here); its website shows the reports that have come in so far.
8:47 PM: It’s often the clouds that make a sunset spectacular … even if they seem ominous. Our somewhat stormy evening brought dark-cloud views in two directions – above, Jacqueline’s photo looking westward; below, Lise’s photo looking to the northeast:
Thanks for sharing!
9:28 PM: We should mention, these clouds brought big rain to some other parts of the area. And even more beautiful sights here – Mark Dale has shared this:
Newest forecast says clearer, warmer weather will return, so summer’s not quite done yet.
9:50 PM: And shortly after we updated … the rain began here, in earnest, as you are probably well aware!
(Photo by Christopher Frankovich)
9:18 PM: As predicted, thunderstorms have arrived – coming up from the south/southeast right now, and you might even have seen lightning over downtown already. This follows a record-setting high temperature today, 96 degrees (it was still 85 at 9 pm). The thunderstorms are expected to stay in the area through at least tomorrow.
10:42 PM UPDATE: Rain arrived with the most recent cell. Also a reminder … we had one short-lived lost pet report, a dog spooked by the thunder and lightning, so make sure your pet is extra-safe. Meantime, just received, and added, an excellent lightning photo from West Seattle photographer Christopher Frankovich - thanks!
11:04 PM NOTE: And in case you’ve noticed this too – yes, that’s aircraft heading westward, likely because of the weather, in a different pattern than usual this time of night.
1:24 AM: Thanks also to Doug B for sharing a view of a bolt spotted from Hamilton Viewpoint in North Admiral. Things have calmed down since our last update – the air traffic shifted away, no further thundershowers – but they remain in the forecast for today (Tuesday) as of a late-evening update.
(From Harbor Avenue: Photo by David Hutchinson)
As Space.com put it, Sunday night’s full moon was the “superest supermoon” of the year – the closest one to Earth this year.
(Photo by Jim Clark)
Next month’s full moon (September 8th) will be almost as close.
(Photo by Craig Young)
As Alice Enevoldsen writes in the newest edition of “Skies Over West Seattle,” it’s only one of this week’s attractions for skygazers.
(Photo by Carolyn Newman)
How close *was* the moon, you ask? 221,765 miles. Or so. This calculator puts it a bit farther away.
Thanks for the sunset photos, concluding a day that started with a “sun-derstorm”! Top, from Greg; next, from David Schneider.
More in the works.
ADDED 11:07 PM: From Kevin Callahan:
(Those are the “crepuscular rays.”) From “Seattletimebandit,” who noted, “Wires or not, still spectacular”:
And from Michelle Riggen-Ransom, a wider view with the aforementioned crepuscular rays:
8:02 AM: If you didn’t hear the thunder just now – forecasters are warning that despite the sunshine, a thunderstorm is about to move through, bringing heavy rain. Past that, though, the forecast says sunny and 80s for the afternoon.
8:15 AM: It’s been raining for going on 10 minutes now. Still partly sunny out there, and more thunder in the distance. (added) Commenter DTK offers the real-time radar link.
9:11 AM: More thunder – so it’s not over yet (as the radar suggested) …
(Photo by Don Brubeck)
Hope you were able to see the colors firsthand … after some drizzle and lightning, one of the most intensely colorful sunsets we’ve seen in a long time.
(Photo provided by Gary Smith with permission of anonymous photographer)
It’s only now ebbing with a line of deep pink in the northwest.
(Photo by Greg)
What a way to end West Seattle Summer Fest weekend!
(Photo by James Bratsanos)
Thanks to everyone who’s sharing photos – more:
(Photo by Jissy)
The colors were visible from the stands during the Sounders game, and back across the bay, from the sands of Alki:
(Photo by Eilene Hutchinson)
Might be another two or three to add – still reviewing the mail – again, thank you.
You’ve probably heard that tonight’s moon is not only the full moon, but is also the “supermoon,” brighter because the moon is closer to the earth. Space.com says the next two full moons also will qualify. Above, the dusk-ish view from Brian Fenske; below, the moonrise earlier, from Kayla Fenske.
If you’re going to be up early, look for the moonset just before 6 am, per the WSB Weather page.
It’s been warm for days – and it’s about to get a lot warmer. The National Weather Service has issued an “excessive heat watch” alert (see it here) for the weekend, Saturday morning through Sunday night. Highs are expected in the 90s – and even after the weekend, no significant cooldown is likely before at least midweek.
Quick break for pretty views of tonight’s sunset – on the eve of what’s forecast as clouds and showers. Above, from Don Brubeck; below, from Myrtle.
Thanks for sharing!
Sundog over West Seattle? Thanks to David Hutchinson (above) and Don Brubeck (below), frequent and much-appreciated WSB community contributors, for sharing the photos of what we think was a sunset sundog – one of the phenomena discussed in Alice Enevoldsen‘s “Skies Over West Seattle” a year ago.
Unusual cloud formations, too – any help identifying them would be welcome!
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