Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Bismarck, ND

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FXUS63 KBIS 150627

Area Forecast Discussion
National Weather Service Bismarck ND
1227 AM CST Fri Dec 15 2017

Issued at 1217 AM CST Fri Dec 15 2017

Minimal changes for the early morning update. Skies are increasing
over the west and temperatures have started to rise most areas.
May see a slight drop yet at places like Bowman and Hettinger,
but these too should see rising temperatures shortly. Nothing as
of yet for precipitation reaching the ground. Forecast sounding
look like the chance for freezing drizzle is minimal, especially
north, but with some obs reporting unknown precip earlier, will
keep a mention for the overnight period.

UPDATE Issued at 938 PM CST Thu Dec 14 2017

For mid-evening update have dropped low temperatures a bit over
the far west where clearing has led to temperatures starting to
nudge into the lower 20s. Otherwise, going forecast is in good

UPDATE Issued at 657 PM CST Thu Dec 14 2017

For early evening update have broadened out the chances for
freezing drizzle over portions of central North Dakota and James
River Valley which is supported by area soundings, and a few
observations reporting unknown precipitation. Remainder of
forecast looks good.


.SHORT TERM...(This evening through Friday)

Issued at 240 PM CST Thu Dec 14 2017

Forecast highlights/challenges in the short term period will be
lingering light precipitation this afternoon/tonight, followed by
light snow chances north central and possibly east on Friday, with
mild temperatures west and south central Friday aft.

Currently, northwest flow aloft with an upper level jet streak
nosing south into the central and eastern Dakotas. Regional radar
continues to show light returns mainly across my central and
eastern counties ahead of the jet and around a broad baroclinic
zone. Mainly light snow but have seen a few reports of light mixed
precipitation. Looking at model soundings, there does appear to be
a dry mid level layer which would contribute to lack of ice and
bring a chance for light freezing rain, though road surface
temperatures are above freezing so impacts very minimal if any.

For tonight, low level warm air advection initiates from west to
east mainly during the overnight. Continued jet induced forcing
aloft (weak) over my east will couple with a surface trough
developing from the Turtle Mountains south through the James River
Valley to bring a continued chance for light precipitation to my
eastern counties. Mid level dry layer is depicted to slide
southeast into this same area later tonight and will bring a
window for light freezing rain. Travel impacts are possible and
may linger well into Friday. Dry elsewhere but remaining mostly
cloudy. Lows will remain mainly in the 20s.

Band of light snow will develop from far north central ND to
across the Red River Valley late tonight into Friday ahead of a
warm front and our next embedded S/WV. Minimal impacts to these
areas with maybe half an inch to an inch of snow possible in the
Turtle Mountains. Mild temperatures behind the front with highs in
the 40s west and south central.

.LONG TERM...(Friday night through Thursday)

Issued at 240 PM CST Thu Dec 14 2017

Cold front moves through the area Friday night with breezy
conditions for Saturday. Gridded data along with high res models
continue to show some areas of light freezing rain Friday night
into Saturday morning north and west. Soundings do indeed show a
saturated supercooled water regime with sufficient vertical
motion/omega for some mention freezing rain potential so will
again keep this in the forecast. After Saturday morning, dry
weather resumes through Sunday. Another clipper/cold front shifts
through late Sunday night into Monday morning. This will result
in another chance of snow mainly northern ND and another breezy
day Monday. Another system (with potential moderate to high
impacts) is slated for Tuesday night and Wednesday. Widespread
accumulating snow will be possible though much depends on where
the sfc low sets up and tracks. Once this system departs, very
cold air is then forecast to pour into the region, lingering
beyond the long term based on long range outlooks such as the MJO
and ensemble runs. Sent a partner email regarding the cold and
also posted on social media. Some guidance suggest highs only in
the single digits though much will depend on any snow cover and
how much the cold arctic air moderates.


.AVIATION...(For the 06Z TAFS through 06Z Friday night)
Issued at 1217 AM CST Fri Dec 15 2017

Widespread MVFR cigs will continue tonight over central and
eastern North Dakota, including KMOT/KBIS/KJMS.
Conditions will improve to VFR at KMOT/KBIS before sunrise, and
before 18Z at KJMS.

Most of western North Dakota, including KISN/KDIK is expected to
remain VFR. However, there is some uncertainty with KISN, as the
western edge of the MVFR cloud shield may reach KISN at times before
sunrise...but more likely the prevailing condition should be VFR.




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