It will be a hot and a bit breezy today before the arrival of a weak cold front tonight into tomorrow. For most of Northcentral Washington, this afternoon will feature the hottest temperatures of the summer thus far. Places like Moses Lake, Othello, Grand Coulee, and Wenatchee will flirt with triple digits. Pre- frontal southwest winds between 10 and 15 mph will develop this afternoon across the Columbia Basin, West Plains, and Waterville Plateau. With humidity values dropping below 20 percent this afternoon, the combination of wind and low humidity will raise concerns for grass and brush fires. For places prone to evening gap winds east of the Cascades like Ellensburg, Vantage, Wenatchee, and Waterville, wildfire concerns will persist into the evening as post frontal westerly winds gust as high as 25 mph.
The arrival of “cooler” temperatures will happen on Wednesday as shallow maritime air spills across the Cascades. Afternoon highs on Wednesday should be 3 to 5 degrees cooler than today for the Columbia Basin and Wenatchee Valley with afternoon readings tomorrow generally in the mid 90’s.
More noticeable changes will arrive Thursday as an upper level trough of low sharpens over Western Washington and crosses the Cascades during the day Thursday. The Wenatchee Valley can expect sunny skies, a northwest wind around 10 mph with afternoon high temperatures in the upper 80’s.
On Friday, cooler air west of the Cascades will be shoved more vigorously into Central and Eastern Washington. Most of the Inland Northwest can expect highs in the mid to upper 80’s with west winds of 10 to 20 mph. Despite cooler temperatures, our wildfire concerns will remain elevated on Thursday with breezy winds and humidity levels between 20 and 25 percent across the Columbia Basin, West Plains, and Palouse.
For Saturday, dry and calmer weather returns with highs in the upper 80’s to near 90 degrees.
From Sunday into Monday weather models suggest a ridge of high pressure building back in with sunny skies and afternoon high temperatures once again climbing to above normal into the mid 90’s on Sunday and the upper 90’s on Monday.