PORTLAND -- Temperatures throughout the Portland Metro area were in the 20s Wednesday morning but blustery gusts from the Gorge created wind chill temps down to the single digits, according to KGW meteorologist Nick Allard.
"The east wind will increase this morning and into the afternoon for very windy conditions all over," he said. "Temps will top out in the upper 20s in Portland with mostly sunny skies."
The wind chill on Mount Hood could drop to 20 below Wednesday, he added.
There is a chance of an inch or two of snow Thursday in the central and southern valley and flurries in Salem and the southern stretches of Portland.
Arctic air should keep temperatures below freezing through Saturday. Temps in some areas could dip down to 10 degrees, approaching record lows, according to KGW Meteorologist Rod Hill.
Then, on Saturday, Hill said the valley floor could see 6 inches of snow.
"Confidence is as high as it could be that we're going to see 6 inches of widespread snow on Saturday," Hill said.
Skiers should also expect a snow dump this weekend on Mt. Hood, with up to a foot falling at ski areas. The cold weather will allow resorts to make snow throughout the week. But people headed to Mt. Hood should be careful. Hill warned that the dip in the mercury means mountain passes could be covered in ice.
In Portland, city officials turned off area water bubblers in anticipation of the freeze and road crews were preparing for icy road conditions.
"We are spot treating with de-icing all week throughout this cold snap," said Kimberly Dinwiddie of the Oregon Department of Transportation.
Warming shelters started opening Tuesday in anticipation of the cold.