Expect another chilly morning, then a one-two punch of wind, rain

Nate Walker scrapes ice off of his truck window in December 2011 in Bellingham.
Nate Walker scrapes ice off of his truck window in December 2011 in Bellingham. THE BELLINGHAM HERALD

If you had to scrape frost off your windshield Tuesday morning, Oct. 11, you’re not alone, as Whatcom County saw its first freeze of the season.

But the cold snap won’t last, forecasters say, as a one-two punch of wet and windy storms is expected to arrive late this week.

Temperatures dipped into the 30s in the wee hours of Monday, Oct. 10, and Tuesday, Oct. 11, according to observations at Bellingham International Airport. A National Weather Service meteorologist in Seattle said it was several degrees cooler early Tuesday morning in the lowlands of Whatcom County.

It’s a pretty juicy system, one right after the other.

Kirby Cook, National Weather Service

“I’m seeing a few spots that sort of dipped to around 30,” meteorologist Kirby Cook said. “If you saw frost on your car, that reinforces it. It looks like the cooler temps were north and east of Bellingham.”

Bellingham firefighters were called to assist a man apparently suffering from hypothermia Tuesday morning on a West Holly Street sidewalk in downtown. The man was taken into protective custody and then to St. Joseph hospital, Bellingham police Lt. Bob Vander Yacht said.

Rain will begin Wednesday night in advance of twin Pacific storm systems that could bring high winds and as much as 10 inches of rain through the weekend, Cook said.

Cook said to expect up to 2 inches of rain in Bellingham on Thursday, followed by more Saturday, when the second system arrives. Temperatures will warm into the high 50s as the storms ride a current of tropical air.

“It’s a pretty juicy system, one right after the other,” Cook said. “There’s a fair amount of moisture with both systems, but not the atmospheric river of a Pineapple Express. Certainly a very Northwest fall.”

Cook said the storm’s power depends on where in the Northwest it makes landfall. Current weather models show the system roaring into the Strait of Juan de Fuca and pummeling the Puget Sound region with high winds and heavy rain.

Robert Mittendorf: 360-756-2805, @BhamMitty