Dr. Nick Bond, a Washington State University climatologist, says climate change isn't just marching forward -- it's speeding up.
The Pacific Northwest's highest mountains and volcanoes will really see shifts in the second half of this century. Dr. Bond says parts of the country will become a "different place."
"Our snow pack is going to be a lot less, from a water resources point of view," he said. "There's going to be probably a lot more floods in the winter. The precipitation that falls will be a lot more in the form of rain than snow, and there will be less water to get us through the dry summer."
Dr. Bond said we can expect a degree or two warming in the next couple of decades (with variation year to year), but after that, you can expect annual warming of three to five degrees.
KGW Meteorologist Matt Zaffino, who has been covering Pacific Northwest weather for the past 35 years, agrees.
"What I have seen is a trend towards the snow coming later in the year," Zaffino said. "We'll get a lot of heavy rain in November on relatively bare mountain ground, and that can lead to debris flows that wash out roads. We saw that on Mount Hood several times with Highway 35 in the last 10 years or so."
(Scroll to the bottom of this story for a Q&A with Matt Zaffino)