Rare Snow Covers Portland
acquired December 16, 2008 download large image (4 MB, JPEG, 3840x2880)
acquired December 16, 2008 download GeoTIFF file (33 MB, TIFF, 3756x3112)
acquired December 16, 2008 download Google Earth file (KML)

An unusually heavy snow storm blanketed Oregon’s Willamette Valley and much of the surrounding region, including the Portland metropolitan area during the 2008 holiday season. Snowfall that began December 14 continued over a week later, piling up nearly a foot of snow and approaching all-time records for the region. The severe weather intermittently shut down some of the local interstates, hindering travel throughout the region. This satellite image of the snow covering Oregon was captured by the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA’s Aqua satellite on December 16. The highest concentrations are in the Willamette River valley and on the Columbia Plateau east of the Cascade Mountains. Temperatures above freezing kept the Oregon coast, the Columbia River Valley, and valleys in the Cascade foothills snow free.

  1. References

  2. Hannah-Jones, N. (2008, December 21). Icy snowstorm slows region to a crawl. oregonlive.com. Accessed December 22, 2008.
  3. National Weather Service. Portland's Snowfall Records & Christmas Snow. Accessed December 22, 2008.

NASA images courtesy MODIS Rapid Response Team at NASA GSFC. The MODIS Rapid Response Team offers daily images of this area. Caption by Kevin Ward.

Aqua - MODIS

Rare Snow Covers Portland

Image Location
Image Location
No other images in this Event
Return to Natural Hazards