Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Albuquerque, NM
FXUS65 KABQ 242346 AAA
Area Forecast Discussion...UPDATED
National Weather Service Albuquerque NM
546 PM MDT WED AUG 24 2016
00Z TAF CYCLE
The remnants of an upper low pressure system are departing north
central New Mexico and moving into eastern Colorado. The north
central to northeastern sections of New Mexico will remain favored
for some shower and thunderstorm activity this evening as a cold
front slides into the state. A few isolated storms will also be
possible into the east central to southeastern plains of the state
through the evening. Any thunderstorms will be capable of
producing brief heavy downpours with reduced
ceilings/visibilities, hail, and gusty downburst winds. On
Thursday, areas along and east of the central mountain chain will
observe increased storm activity with isolated to scattered cells
also developing over the high terrain west of the Rio Grande.
.PREV DISCUSSION...330 PM MDT WED AUG 24 2016...
Monsoon moisture will continue to stream over New Mexico through
the end of the week as an upper level trough slowly approaches and
eventually crosses from the west. A few storms will be capable of
producing minor flooding each day. High temperatures will vary
from near normal to several degrees below normal. In the wake of
the trough early next week, some drier air will filter into mainly
northern and western areas from the northwest with warmer
temperatures. However, models show some richer moisture lingering
over southern and east areas with daily rounds of spotty showers
and storms persisting.
A couple of short waves embedded in the upper level trough pattern
will provide a focus for precipitation. The first will cross NE NM
and SE CO tonight and send a back door cool front southwestward
into our state. This will favor the Sangre de Cristos eastward
with scattered to numerous showers and thunderstorms tonight,
then the east slopes of the central mountain chain on Thursday.
The second shortwave trough is forecast to shear apart and weaken
as it pushes over NM from the northwest late Saturday and Saturday
After PWATs generally around 0.75 to 1.0 inch through Saturday,
values across the NW third of the forecast area should drop to
around a half inch Sunday through the middle of next week.
However, models depict moist low level south and southeast flow
persisting over southern and eastern areas keeping PWATs up. An
axis of high pressure is forecast to build from LA to the Four
Corners area early next week.
An active weather pattern through the weekend followed by some
drier and warmer weather. A good surge of moisture will be possible
later next week.
Today`s crop of showers and thunderstorms have been tame so far.
They are forming under the upper level trough that is directly over
NM this afternoon. This convection will continue into the night,
mainly across the east. And speaking of the east, the back door cold
front is still on track to reach far northeast NM this evening, with
the front pressing south and west overnight. We still expect a gap
wind into the Rio Grande Valley around daybreak but it looks to be
pretty light. A bit stronger east wind event may occur Thursday
night, which would push more moisture into the RGV to the
continental divide for Friday. Best chances for wetting rains
Thursday will be over the central mountains and adjacent eastern
Highlands; for Friday favored areas will be all the mountains, but
with scattered showers and storms still firing over the valleys and
plains. Friday should be the most active day or the forecast period,
especially if deeper subtropical moisture can make it into NM, as
models are hinting at. If this happens, the threat for heavy rain
flash flooding will be higher.
The next upstream trough will cross the state this weekend. It is
still possible that some Monsoonal moisture could move northward out
of Mexico during the weekend period. Saturday will remain quite
active while Sunday may be toned down a bit. Northwest NM may see
the most drying on Sunday as the upper wave will be east of there.
Long range models continue to waffle on where the upper high ends up
next week. The latest idea has the high building toward NM on
Monday, briefly over the state Tuesday, then moves east Wednesday.
So, after a drying trend Monday and Tuesday, monsoon moisture may
make a return from Wednesday on. In fact, the ECMWF has a weak upper
low moving into southeast AZ Wednesday and drifting into NM
Thursday. The end of the month should end quite wet.
Ventilation rates will be poor across the Middle Grande Valley
Thursday. Some improvement is expected on Friday even though mixing
heights lower, then rates decrease over the weekend and early next
week with areas of poor ventilation.