Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Fairbanks, AK

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FXAK69 PAFG 121426
AFDAFG

NORTHERN ALASKA FORECAST DISCUSSION
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE FAIRBANKS AK
526 AM AKST FRI FEB 12 2016

.DISCUSSION...

UPPER AIR...
UPPER LOW CENTERED OVER THE WESTERN BROOKS RANGE WILL MOVE TO
ABOUT 100 MILES WEST OF CAPE LISBURNE BY LATE SUNDAY NIGHT AND
TO ABOUT 100 MILES NORTHEAST OF WRANGEL ISLAND BY LATE MONDAY
NIGHT....LEAVING A WEAK MAINLY SOUTHERLY FLOW PATTERN ALOFT
PERSISTING OVER THE NORTHERN ALASKA MAINLAND THROUGH SUNDAY.
WEAK UPPER LEVEL RIDGING WILL BUILD OVER NORTHERN ALASKA MONDAY
AND TUESDAY.

SURFACE...
1044 MB HIGH CENTERED ABOUT 600 MILES NORTH OF PRUDHOE BAY
WILL WEAKEN TO A 1038 MB HIGH CENTERED ABOUT 700 MILES NORTH
OF WRANGEL ISLAND BY LATE SUNDAY NIGHT. A WEAK 998 MB LOW
WILL DEVELOP NEAR CAPE LISBURNE SATURDAY AFTERNOON...FILLING
TO A 1006 MB LOW CENTERED ABOUT 200 MILES NORTHWEST OF POINT
LAY BY LATE SUNDAY NIGHT. OCCLUDED FRONT MOVING ONSHORE ALONG
THE NORTH GULF COAST WILL RAPIDLY WASH OUT DURING THE NEXT
24 HOURS...BUT MAY BRING SCATTERED SNOW SHOWERS TO THE SOUTHERN
SLOPES OF THE ALASKA RANGE.

A BAND OF MAINLY SCATTERED SNOW SHOWERS EXTENDING FROM THE
RUSSIAN MISSION AREA TO THE CENTRAL BROOKS RANGE WILL DRIFT
VERY SLOWLY WESTWARD THROUGH SATURDAY...WITH SNOW SHOWER
ACTIVITY GRADUALLY DECREASING.

A WEAK PRESSURE GRADIENT ALONG THE ARCTIC COAST IS EXPECTED
TO TIGHTEN UP THIS AFTERNOON...RESULTING IN INCREASING EAST
WINDS ALONG THE ARCTIC COAST. BLIZZARD WARNINGS HAVE BEEN
ISSUED FOR ZONES 202-203-204...BUT THIS IS EXPECTED TO BE
A LOW END EVENT WITH WIND GUSTS NOT EXPECTED TO EXCEED
45-50 MPH.

BEYOND THE MIDDLE OF NEXT WEEK...YESTERDAYS 00Z RUN OF THE
ECMWF SHOWS A SIGNIFICANT DEPARTURE FROM PRECEDING RUNS AND THE
GFS AS IT MARCHES A VERY DEEP AND COLD UPPER LOW SOUTHWESTWARD
ACROSS NORTHERN ALASKA OVER THE WEEKEND WITH 850 MB TEMPERATURES
FALLING TO BELOW -30C IN THE COLD CORE. THIS RUN IS PROBABLY AN
OUTLIER AND HAS NO SUPPORT FROM THE ECMWF ENSEMBLE MEAN WHICH
SHOWS A MEAN RIDGE POSITION PERSISTING ALONG THE WEST COAST OF
NORTH AMERICA AND NORTHWESTWARD INTO ALASKA OVER NEXT WEEKEND. THE
END OF THE GEFS ENSEMBLE MEAN RUN...NEXT FRIDAY...INDICATES A
MEAN RIDGE POSITION EXTENDING FROM NORTHWEST CANADA INTO ALASKA.
SO AT THIS TIME...AN AVERAGE OF THE TWO ENSEMBLE MEANS LOOKS LIKE
THE BEST FORECAST FOR THE MEDIUM RANGE. THIS BEING SAID...TEMPERATURES
IN THE MEDIUM RANGE PERIOD ARE LIKELY TO CONTINUE TO AVERAGE ABOVE
SEASONAL NORMALS AS SOME SORT OF SOUTHERLY COMPONENT FLOW ALOFT
PERSISTS.

&&

.AFG WATCHES/WARNINGS/ADVISORIES...
BLIZZARD WARNING FOR AKZ202-AKZ203-AKZ204.

WINTER WEATHER ADVISORY FOR AKZ201.

GALE WARNING FOR PKZ235-PKZ240-PKZ245.

BRISK WIND ADVISORY FOR PKZ210-PKZ220-PKZ230.
&&

$$

RF FEB 16


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