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PORTLAND -- Northwest residents woke up to freezing temps in the Portland area and the Willamette Valley, and readings in the teens in Central and Eastern Oregon.

The cold spell has spread throughout the west, with snow and frigid conditions in the Rockies, the Dakotas, and California.

In the Portland area, east winds will keep Wednesday's high at a chilly 34 degrees, said KGW Meteorologist Nick Allard. Expect the same for Thursday.

More: Portlanders prep for freezing temps

Snow may hit Salem and the Southern Willamette Valley but miss Portland, he said.

Forecast

The wintry storm pushing through the western half of the country is bringing bitterly cold temperatures that prompted safety warnings for residents in the Rockies and threatened crops as far south as California.

Areas of Montana and the Dakotas were forecast to reach lows in the minus-20s. The icy arctic blast was expected to be followed by another one later in the week, creating an extended period of cold weather that hasn't been seen since the late 1990s, meteorologists said.

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