Seattle’s Snow Arrives, Laying Down a Fine White Blanket

by on January 18, 2012
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Screen Shot 2012-01-18 at 9.31.32 AM

The Seattle Times had it right (Photo: MvB)

An unfortunate articulate #8 marooned at Denny and East Olive (Photo: MvB)

After #8s foundered on East Olive, it began running up Pine instead (Photo: MvB)

Dick's Drive-In, open even if no one's driving in (Photo: MvB)

On Denny, a Greek chorus of bystanders watched sledders, skiers, snowboarders (Photo: MvB)

And this guy, who half-assed his way down Denny (Photo: MvB)

Denny as a snow park (Photo: MvB)

Some bicyclists just plowed right along as per usual (Photo: MvB)

It *is* a bike route. (Photo: MvB)

Some bicyclists decided the bus was a better bet (Photo: MvB)

I-5 was mostly clear, with lighter traffic than usual (Photo: MvB)

Cross-country skier takes a look at snow sculpture in Volunteer Park (Photo: MvB)

Except for the picnic table, a wilderness scene (Photo: MvB)

Cross-country skiers were everywhere, smugly gliding (Photo: MvB)

Around shady corners in Volunteer Park lurked hordes of sledders (Photo: MvB)

Caravans of sledders trekked through Volunteer Park, looking like winter sports refugees (Photo: MvB)

Sledding Volunteer Park (Photo: MvB)

The sled jump, in progress (Photo: MvB)

East Aloha's hill is another traditional sledding spot (Photo: MvB)

View south on 15th Avenue East on Seattle's Capitol Hill (Photo: MvB)

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After much back-and-forth in the weather media on megastorm potential, a regular-sized snow day has arrived in Seattle, dropping two to four inches around town, and continuing at this moment in a fine, powdery haze. On radar, the arctic air from Canada meeting, from the south, moisture-laden warmer air off the Pacific, takes up most of the Washington and Oregon coasts. For plenty of people, megastorm or not, this will be memorable enough. KOMO has reported some accumulation totals, with areas south of Seattle being harder hit so far:

As of 6 a.m., new snow totals of 10″ are being reported in Olympia, 6″¬†Olalla, 4″ in DuPont, 4″¬†in Kent, 3.5″ in Tacoma, and 2-3″ in Auburn, Aberdeen, Normandy Park, and Federal Way.

The forecast now skips any mention of rain for this afternoon, though snow may taper off later. Thursday we may see more snow showers, but Friday is supposed to be blustery and rainy. In Seattle, you can keep track of snow removal and street brining on this snow map, which also includes live camera views of streets around town, so you can check for delays caused by spin-outs and stuck cars.

Metro buses are of course using snow routes, or not running at all, which means that One Bus Away may or may not be accurate for the duration. Even snow routing isn’t a guarantee, either: a CHS commenter reports, “As of 8:40 a.m. there are four buses stacked up outside Starbucks [on East Olive Way], unable to get up the hill past a stuck articulated bus.”

While you’re at home today, poking around the internet for entertainment, you may notice a persistent level of alarm about something called SOPA, anti-online piracy legislation that in its current incarnation is disliked by Amazon, Microsoft, Google, Yahoo, Facebook, Twitter, Wikipedia, and a host of other internet businesses. Wikipedia has decided to “go dark” today to illustrate the potential effects of SOPA. Google has a special SOPA page. But you know the most impact is likely to come from The Oatmeal’s animated gif explaining his position. Search, schmearch, people want their online comics.

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