Hope you enjoyed the dry, warm weather on Thursday, Aug. 27. It’s going to be the last bit of sunshine for about a week, according to National Weather Service forecasts.
Cool, wet and windy weather will roll into Whatcom County and the rest of Western Washington starting Friday. It will continue through the weekend and is a big enough change from recent patterns to prompt a notice from the National Weather Service in Seattle.
Rain is expected to pummel the region, especially on Friday and Saturday, and in the mountains.
A total of 1 to 2 1/2 inches of rain could fall over much of the area during the weekend, providing some relief to thirsty trees and lawns.
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Up higher, the south-facing slopes of the Olympics and Cascades are expected to get 3 to 5 inches of rain, providing much-needed help to firefighters battling wildfires that are burning thousands of acres in the North Cascades and threatening the towns of Newhalem and Diablo.
“This amount of rain will likely end or help reduce the size of the ongoing wildfires in the mountains,” the National Weather Service said.
That, in turn, should help improve the air in Bellingham, Lynden and other parts of Whatcom County, which has had periods of worsening air quality as winds blew smoke far from the sites of wildfires.
Starting Friday, daytime temperatures will fall below normal, with most lowland areas like Bellingham not likely to crack 70 degrees this weekend.
Gusty winds also are expected to blow into parts of Western Washington on Saturday as a strong front moves across the area. Some parts of the coast and the northwest interior that are exposed to winds from the south could have gusts as high as 45 to 50 mph.
As for the rain — which has been rare during this dry, hot summer — get used to it, at least for the short term. After the wet weekend, it’s expected to stick around off and on through Thursday.
And people headed into the mountains to play this weekend should pay close attention to the forecast, the weather service warned.
Reach Kie Relyea at 360-715-2234 or firstname.lastname@example.org.