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Weather advisory in effect; bigger storms on the way

As the South Sound wakes tomorrow morning to an expected 3 to 7 inches of new snow, the National Weather Service warns that more severe winter weather could be on the way.“I’d recommend staying home if you can,” said Johnny Burg, an NWS meteorologist. “I definitely would if I could.”By Wednesday evening some areas in the South Sound could accumulate as much as 14 inches of snow, Burg said. The NWS issued a storm watch for Monday night through Tuesday afternoon and through Wednesday evening. Temperatures could dip into the mid-20s tonight and Wednesday, Burg said.The Washington State Department of Transportation is preparing for chaos on the roads, schools were announcing delays tonight and avalanche warnings were issued for the Cascade and Olympic mountains.“The National Weather Service says it will be bad all over,” said Dave McCormick, WSDOT’s regional maintenance manager. “We are preparing for ‘bad all over’ and drivers should too.”Tacoma, Seattle, Bremerton and Shelton are the areas expected to be most impacted, according to the NWS. Olympia could get 1 to 3 inches today and six to 14 inches on Wednesday.“If you must travel in the watch area,” the Weather Service says, “carry an extra flashlight, food, water and blankets in case of emergency.”“We are still tracking the storms so the timing is still uncertain at this time,” Burg said The snowfall has been great news for ski areas. Crystal Mountain had more than 15,000 skier visits during the three-day weekend, including 3,850 on Monday. Crystal had more than 6,200 visits Sunday.“The roads are pretty good up here but when there is snow in town the number (of visitors) typically goes down a little bit,” said resort spokeswoman Justus Hyatt. The ski area expects this to be a banner week with school closures and people contemplating staying home from work. Snow totals are expected to be counted in feet in the mountains.“You might want to give some thought to taking a day off work this week and going skiing,” Hyatt said. “The snow is only going to get better.”Avalanche warnings have been issued for Tuesday above 4,000 feet in the Olympics and Cascades. The Northwest Weather and Avalanche Center’s report predicts “increasing danger Tuesday night.”By Thursday temperatures will climb into the 40s but precipitation is likely to continue through the weekend, Burg said.There is not a dry day in sight, he said. Temperatures might dip below freezing again Saturday night, with a possibility of more snow before temperatures warm again Sunday.Staff writer Matt Batcheldor contributed to this report.Craig Hill: 253-597-8497

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