You’re not all wet if you thought it rained more than usual this past month. October was a record-breaking period for rainfall across Western Washington. And more rain is highly likely as the region enters what’s traditionally its wettest month, which might get even wetter and colder if a La Nina makes her presence known.
Aberdeen had a bucket-busting rainfall total of 20.02 inches as of 8 a.m. Monday while Hoquiam Airport measured 15.15 inches as of 1 a.m. Monday — which could have neared 15.5 by the end of the day, according to the National Weather Service.
Aberdeen’s previous October precipitation record was 17.84 inches in Oct. 1975 and Hoquiam’s 14.68 inches was established in 1956. Normal October rainfall in Aberdeen is 7.69 inches and in Hoquiam only 6.53 inches.
“Does that mean the rest of the winter is going to be wet?” said Johny Burg, a Weather Service meteorologist based in Seattle. “It’s not an indicator for a reliable forecast.”
Burg also noted that November is usually the wettest month of the year in this region.
But the chances are pretty good La Nina will bring the Northern Hemisphere additional precipitation and cooler temperatures, especially during fall.
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Climate Prediction Center reports there’s approximately a 70 percent chance of La Nina conditions through this season. It’s only slightly favored to persist through the winter, however, with a 55 percent possibility.
Burg explained that if La Nina plays a significant role in the weather this winter, there would be wet, chilly weather and, perhaps, even more snow than usual. The snow level in the Olympic Mountains was at 5,000 feet on Monday.
Some of the conditions to watch for during times of heavy precipitation include flooding, landslides and, especially on the coast, storms with plenty of wind, he said.
“Be prepared for fallen trees and tree branches, power outages and even structural damage,” Burg warned.