Lewis County Enters Flood Watch Wednesday With Forecasts of ‘Major Flooding’ at Chehalis River in Grand Mound 


Here comes the rain. 

And flooding. 

And snow. 

An active weather pattern is expected to bring moderate to heavy rainfall and upwards of 3 inches of precipitation to the Twin Cities on Thursday, thrusting the area into a flood watch expected to last through Saturday afternoon.

“Excessive runoff may result in flooding of rivers, creeks, streams and other low-lying and flood-prone locations,” the alert from the National Weather Service in Seattle read. “Creeks and streams may rise out of their banks. Melting lowland snow will contribute to the flood potential and to soil saturation and thus, increasing the threat of landslides.” 

Both the Newaukum and Chehalis rivers are expected to see noticeable flooding, with waterways peaking Friday afternoon. 

The Chehalis River at Grand Mound is expected to crest above “major flooding” at 144.99 feet by about 5 p.m. on Friday, according to Tuesday evening’s forecast from NWS’s Advanced Hydrologic Prediction Service. The record at this meter is 147.3 feet. 

Both the Chehalis and Skookumchuck rivers are expected to crest just below “moderate flooding,” but the Skookumchuck at Bucoda is forecast to peak a full foot above the designation. 

The Newaukum River at Chehalis is forecast to crest just below “major flooding.” 

Mostly rain, with a bit of snowfall, is expected the rest of the weekend, according to the NWS forecast at the Chehalis-Centralia Airport. Next week will start off with mostly clouds and a chance of rain. 

A winter storm warning was also in effect for much of the Cascades in Washington state, and portions of some mountain valleys in Lewis County. Heavy snowfall is expected Wednesday through Thursday above 1,500 feet. 

White Pass was closed earlier this week due to multiple snow slides, high winds and undriveable conditions. Cascade mountain passes have been experiencing heavier than average snowfall this year, with the Interstate 90 Snoqualmie Pass experiencing a record amount. 

Conditions, chaining requirements and more information on WSDOT mountain passes can be found online at www.wsdot.com/travel/real-time/mountainpasses.