Third storm this week set to bring more wind, rain and snow

SEATTLE -- They say good things come in threes, and if you're a fan of stormy weather, you just might agree with that sentiment.

The third storm in as many days is barreling toward Western Washington, set to bring another round of rain, wind, mountain snow, and perhaps even a little more lowland snow.

We'll continue to see rain and/or snow showers this evening and overnight with snow levels around 200 feet, but little to no accumulations expected. Lows will be in the low-mid 30s.

A vigorous front will begin to arrive after midnight on the coast, spreading inland during the morning. This will bring strong winds to the coast and northwest interior, heavy snow to the mountains, a period of snow to the Hood Canal area and perhaps even a brief snow to the rest of the lowlands before a change to rain.

First, the snow: There is enough cold air around that when the moisture arrives Wednesday morning (between 4-7 a.m.) that the precipitation could begin as snow for a short while just about anywhere (including Seattle) before it changes to rain. Any accumulations would be a dusting to an inch before it changes to rain and washes away but if you're driving right at that time, it could be reduced visibilities. No advisories are in effect for the greater Puget Sound area.

The exception here is the Hood Canal "snow-belt" area (like Hoodsport, Brinnon, Quilcene and Seabeck) where a Snow Advisory is in effect from midnight to 10 a.m. Wednesday for as much as 2-4" of snow before it changes to rain.

Second the wind: A High Wind Warning is in effect from 10 p.m. Tuesday through 4 p.m. on the coast and 7 p.m. in the Northwest Interior. Here, southeast winds could gust as high as 60 mph during that period. The rest of the area will be breezy with gusts to 30-35 mph but this storm track is not really conducive to damaging high winds in the Seattle/Puget Sound area

Up in the mountains, it's more gobs of snow. Winter Storm Warnings are in effect for the Cascades for another 1-2 feet of snow by Thursday.

Otherwise, a rainy and blustery day, with highs around 40.

Rain will slowly taper off to showers Wednesday night and then we remain in a cool, showery pattern from Thursday through Christmas Eve Monday with highs in the low 40s and lows in the mid 30s.

Long range models suggest it won't be a White Christmas, but rather partly sunny after some fog.