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Hurricane-Force Winds Whip Northwest, Rockies

Violent winds are hitting wide regions in the West

Saturday, Jan. 11, 2014

The above graphic shows when the top wind speeds will batter the northwest. (AccuWeather)

A powerful storm will continue to kick up hurricane-force winds across parts of the Northwest and Rockies this weekend, threatening to cause damage, power outages and travel headaches.

Winds Saturday morning gusted to 102 mph on the peak of Crystal Mountain, Wash., and 109 mph at Kenosha Pass, Colo., according to AccuWeather.com Enterprise Solutions Meteorologist, Cory Mottice.

Additional hurricane-force winds will be measured throughout the Northwest and Rockies and not just in the highest elevations.

Such winds are blasting the coast, as well as places to the lee of the Rockies from Montana to Colorado. This includes Cut Bank, Mont., and Cheyenne, Wyo.

Even the lower elevations of Seattle and Spokane, Wash., Portland and Pendleton, Ore., and Denver, Colo., will experience wind gusts to or past 55 mph.

The Northwest will continue to experience its strongest winds of the weekend this Saturday. For Montana, Wyoming and Colorado, the strongest winds will occur on Sunday.

Northwest Interactive Radar
Latest Snow, Wind Watches, Warnings
AccuWeather.com Travel Center

The howling winds threaten to cause damage, power outages and travel problems for both motorists and airline passengers.

Seattle City Light reported that more than 28,000 customers were without power early Saturday morning. The good news is that crews were able to restore power to all but 8,000 of those customers in three hours.

While potentially causing flight delays, the winds will make driving difficult on stretches of Interstates 5, 15, 25, 84 and 90.

High-profile vehicles are at greatest risk of being overturned by the powerful winds, but even drivers of smaller vehicles will feel the winds tug at their cars and trucks.

AccuWeather.com Meteorologist Mike Doll is especially concerned for hazardous driving conditions through passes and roads that are orientated west to east or southwest to northeast.

Winds also threaten to interfere with passing and kicking plays during the NFL playoff games in Seattle Saturday afternoon and Denver Sunday afternoon.

In addition to the wind, players will be dealing with the soaking rain that is also accompanying the wind in Seattle and along the rest of the Northwest's coast and I-5 corridor.

Large waves will also continue to pound the coastline, while the avalanche danger is high in the mountains.

Heavy snow in excess of a foot will blast the Cascades and Bitterroots, including I-90's Snoqualmie Pass and other mountain passes. Travel will become extremely difficult, if not impossible, as the snow combines with the fierce winds to create an all-out blizzard.

A shower or two from the potent Northwest storm will reach San Francisco Saturday afternoon, but not drought-stricken Southern California.

Monday through Tuesday, calmer weather will return to Oregon and Washington as the Rockies and neighboring Plains endure more powerful wind events.

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Just North of Seattle here and tonight's gusts were enough to push over our four burner barbecue. So I guess we are doomed to no grilled steaks for awhile. That's it, this whacky weather has gone too far!

January 12 2014 at 4:54 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Minister Farrakhan was right, God is sending these bad weather as a sign of his coming and to gather all his people from the four corner of the earth where he sent according to their sins against him. Look out America, world your time is now here to answer to the all might. What will you do?

January 12 2014 at 12:44 AM Report abuse -6 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to moniesmh's comment

Dude, this happens ALL the time here in the great northwest!

January 12 2014 at 2:07 AM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply

this is nothing

January 11 2014 at 9:04 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

Oh I forgot, Atlanta will be cold. 61 degrees.

January 11 2014 at 8:21 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

Big deal. The Weather Channel will just pass it off as normal and then move on to New York and say the winter weather is brutal and it is causing dangerous conditions, oh by the way the temps in New York and Boston are 45 and the clouds are making for frustrating times.

January 11 2014 at 8:20 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

It's Bush's fault.

January 11 2014 at 6:20 PM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply

One is whining if they are in the midst of hurrican type winds? What a riciculous post. What are you? Five years old?

January 11 2014 at 5:38 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

The cause is Obuma's mouth is talking-all hot air

January 11 2014 at 4:57 PM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply

I guess the northwest felt deprived of all the attention the rest of the nation was getting last week and now this is their chance to whine.

January 11 2014 at 4:07 PM Report abuse -4 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to flyingfortresb17's comment

The Pacific Northwest has weather like this every year, nothing new here.

January 11 2014 at 5:43 PM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply
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