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Old 08-29-2019, 04:36 PM
 
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[Posts moved from thread in Portland, Oregon forum to a new thread in Washington state forum]

Thanks, you all, for all these interesting comments!

I think I hear you all saying The Dalles is reasonably sunny year-round (moreso than Portland and bit moreso than Hood River, though still not like the sunniest US city), just under a 2 hr. drive to Portland year-round...and (according to StealthRabbit though not NoMoreSnowForMe) the risky winter Gorge driving days are relatively few? (I could just skip driving to Portland those days since Portland would have socializing/fun but not my income.)

Hmm, so maybe The Dalles is a fit for me?

Or if Mosier is about where the weather starts getting sunnier (yet also gets browner, drier, ticks, rattlesnakes, fire risk, and further from Portland)...could just live in Hood River or Odell...and drive 12-20 min. to Mosier for sun breaks?

The mention of Seattle gets me curious if similarly there's a reasonably year-round sunny city under 1.5 hrs. east of Seattle? If so, sounds like it'd have less ice than Columbia River Gorge does?

Last edited by PNW-type-gal; 09-01-2019 at 12:47 PM..
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Old 08-29-2019, 09:57 PM
 
Location: Vancouver, WA
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NatureYogi View Post
Thanks, you all, for all these interesting comments!

The mention of Seattle gets me curious if similarly there's a reasonably year-round sunny city under 1.5 hrs. east of Seattle? If so, sounds like it'd have less ice than Columbia River Gorge does?
I think the consensus is that more sun is definitely a relative thing in the PNW - i.e more than Seattle/Portland but not when compared to the rest of the nation. For more sun than Seattle you could go east. Then you will have more snow and it will be a drier climate.

I just happen to be scoping out that areas there right now for a backpacking trip. There are some amazingly beautiful mountain regions including one called the Enchantments near Leavenworth, Washington. It's a small Bavarian style town that seems to get more sun than Hood River or the Dalles. But it also gets more snow. So there's the trade off. Personally, I prefer less sun and less snow vs. more sun and snow. I lived in that climate in CO.

If really you want more sun and less snow you have to go further south.

Derek
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Old 08-30-2019, 12:06 AM
 
Location: WA Desert, Seattle native
7,551 posts, read 5,256,853 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NatureYogi View Post
Thanks, you all, for all these interesting comments!

I think I hear you all saying The Dalles is reasonably sunny year-round (moreso than Portland and bit moreso than Hood River, though still not like the sunniest US city), just under a 2 hr. drive to Portland year-round...and (according to StealthRabbit though not NoMoreSnowForMe) the risky winter Gorge driving days are relatively few? (I could just skip driving to Portland those days since Portland would have socializing/fun but not my income.)

Hmm, so maybe The Dalles is a fit for me?

Or if Mosier is about where the weather starts getting sunnier (yet also gets browner, drier, ticks, rattlesnakes, fire risk, and further from Portland)...could just live in Hood River or Odell...and drive 12-20 min. to Mosier for sun breaks?

The mention of Seattle gets me curious if similarly there's a reasonably year-round sunny city under 1.5 hrs. east of Seattle? If so, sounds like it'd have less ice than Columbia River Gorge does?
1.5 hours on I-90 east of Seattle takes you to a small town called Cle Elum. Some cool resorts around the area, but still far enough in the Cascades where you get snow in the winter, and cool temps in the summer. But, yes, it is sunnier than the westside.

The Dalles is also a pretty small town. If you like a town where everyone seems to know everyone, then it might be right. I prefer a bit bigger PNW sunbelt area like where I live currently, The Tri-Cities,WA (Richland, Pasco, Kennewick). You might be also like Wenatchee, WA closer to Seattle on US-Hwy 2, but still about 2+ hours from the outer Seattle metro. Similar dry, sunny climate to most of Eastern Washington, with perhaps a bit more snow being so close to the Cascade range.
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Old 08-30-2019, 12:47 AM
 
Location: We_tside PNW (Columbia Gorge) / CO / SA TX / Thailand
26,897 posts, read 44,967,872 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NatureYogi View Post
Thanks, you all, for all these interesting comments!

I think I hear you all saying The Dalles is reasonably sunny year-round (moreso than Portland and bit moreso than Hood River, though still not like the sunniest US city), just under a 2 hr. drive to Portland year-round...... drive 12-20 min. to Mosier for sun breaks?

The mention of Seattle gets me curious if similarly there's a reasonably year-round sunny city under 1.5 hrs. east of Seattle? If so, sounds like it'd have less ice than Columbia River Gorge does?
calibrate... "sunny" in PNW is 'relative'... It is not CO, NM, NV, AZ 'Sunny' in PNW winters. (Anywhere in PNW) Boise and NW from there has gray winters. Some areas get less rain / moisture, but they are not 'sunny'. As in BRIGHT, wear your shirtsleeves and soak-up-the-rays sunny in winter as are the above Mtn states. Love those occasional 70F days in Colorado in January - Feb - Mar, you will NEVER get them in PNW.

Moiser is drier, not BRIGHTER

East of Seattle is Wenatchee, very nice community and good winter weather (slightly colder than TD, OR, but similar). Wenatchee area is really great for biking and shares a regional transit system from Leavenworth to Chelan. (all very nice areas). I would choose Cashmere.

Derek... look into the backpacking areas accessible from Stehekan Ferry / mail boat. Neighbors just got back from a great backpacking trip there. Mt Adams is also very good backpacking area with a lot of nice lakes and Huckleberry fields. (and mushroom hunting (in season)). Access via Troutlake. From Hockinson, you can come into nice areas of Gifford NF, via Cougar to Carson / Troutlake.
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Old 08-30-2019, 12:58 AM
 
Location: Vancouver, WA
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pnwguy2 View Post
1.5 hours on I-90 east of Seattle takes you to a small town called Cle Elum. Some cool resorts around the area, but still far enough in the Cascades where you get snow in the winter, and cool temps in the summer. But, yes, it is sunnier than the westside.

The Dalles is also a pretty small town. If you like a town where everyone seems to know everyone, then it might be right. I prefer a bit bigger PNW sunbelt area like where I live currently, The Tri-Cities,WA (Richland, Pasco, Kennewick). You might be also like Wenatchee, WA closer to Seattle on US-Hwy 2, but still about 2+ hours from the outer Seattle metro. Similar dry, sunny climate to most of Eastern Washington, with perhaps a bit more snow being so close to the Cascade range.
Interesting, so I looked at Cle Elum on the map and while it is ~ 1.5 hours east of Seattle, it has higher than average annual snow. However, if you keep driving east, Ellensburg looks like pretty much the national average for all things weather except less rain. Just Google 'Ellensburg Wa sunny days' to get a general idea.

I'm not sure what it would be like to live there. But weather wise it seems to have more sun and not too much snow.

Living out I90 requires you to go up and over Snoqualmie Pass and that does get more snow in the winter. So you may have to wait until the snow clears to drive into Seattle.

Derek
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Old 08-30-2019, 01:25 AM
 
Location: WA Desert, Seattle native
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Very few commute over the pass if that is what you mean. Ellensburg is still close enough to the cascade range to be significantly cooler year round than places like Wenatchee, Yakima, or Tri cities.
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Old 08-30-2019, 12:16 PM
 
Location: Vancouver, WA
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pnwguy2 View Post
Very few commute over the pass if that is what you mean. Ellensburg is still close enough to the cascade range to be significantly cooler year round than places like Wenatchee, Yakima, or Tri cities.
Looking at their climate graphs on CD the profiles look almost identical. The main difference appears to be daily temps with Wenatchee being a bit hotter year round.


Ellensburg:


Wenatchee:


I'm not sure there would be enough difference to sway a move from one over the others at least in terms of weather. We have friends that live in Wenatchee and seem to really like it with some great outdoor opportunities nearby. But these locations are very different than west of the Cascades on many levels.

I recently drove to Yakima to pick up a puppy for our daughter. Man, talk about a completely different environment. It was like landing on the moon compared to the more green side of the state. It reminded more of a desert town. I find driving out I84 to The Dalles a similar kind of experience though not quite as extreme since Hood River and other more treed areas are nearby.

Derek

Last edited by MtnSurfer; 08-30-2019 at 12:26 PM..
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Old 08-31-2019, 10:57 PM
 
Location: WA Desert, Seattle native
7,551 posts, read 5,256,853 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MtnSurfer View Post
Looking at their climate graphs on CD the profiles look almost identical. The main difference appears to be daily temps with Wenatchee being a bit hotter year round.


Ellensburg:


Wenatchee:


I'm not sure there would be enough difference to sway a move from one over the others at least in terms of weather. We have friends that live in Wenatchee and seem to really like it with some great outdoor opportunities nearby. But these locations are very different than west of the Cascades on many levels.

I recently drove to Yakima to pick up a puppy for our daughter. Man, talk about a completely different environment. It was like landing on the moon compared to the more green side of the state. It reminded more of a desert town. I find driving out I84 to The Dalles a similar kind of experience though not quite as extreme since Hood River and other more treed areas are nearby.

Derek
Well, thanks for those graphs. But they can be deceiving. Ellensburg is almost always 5-15 degrees below
Yakima and Tri-Cities most of the year. I left Wenatchee out of it, because they share some common weather patterns as Ellensburg.

Bottom line, the WA desert (which is generally the Columbia Basin), Tri-Cities, is almost always warmer than areas to the north, including Yakima, mostly to the west-northwest. The Dalles, in Oregon, is similar to the Tri. Walla Walla is also similar, but there are variables there due to it being close to the Blue Mountains.

Tri-Cities has the hottest summers in the State during summer. During winter, Tri-Cities is open to some cold spells, Feb. 2019 was a good example, but generally the climate here is moderate in the winter, hot in the summer, but can experience some aberrations.
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Old 09-01-2019, 06:26 PM
 
Location: Rochester, WA
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Have you ever actually spent time here? You write like we never have any sun. We do. We get plenty of sun in summer, IMHO.

The only time you may need "sun breaks" is in winter. Plan a trip someplace warm in the winter, if you like.
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Old 09-01-2019, 07:35 PM
 
Location: Vancouver, WA
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Diana Holbrook View Post
Have you ever actually spent time here? You write like we never have any sun. We do. We get plenty of sun in summer, IMHO.

The only time you may need "sun breaks" is in winter. Plan a trip someplace warm in the winter, if you like.
Diana, from the other thread the OP has lived in the PNW before, Portland, I think. But she's looking for areas with more sun near (~1.5) a major city.

Derek
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