Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Denver/Boulder, CO

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FXUS65 KBOU 192214

Area Forecast Discussion
National Weather Service Denver/Boulder CO
314 PM MST Mon Feb 19 2018

.SHORT TERM...(This evening through Tuesday)
Issued at 310 PM MST Mon Feb 19 2018

Southwesterly flow aloft continues ahead of the strong upper
trough over the Great Basin. The system was a little slower than
expected today, so it took awhile to see the heavier snow over the
mountains, but we are headed into the heaviest snowfall period now
through the early evening. Instability ahead of the system has
allowed for a few thunderstorms to form over western and southern
Colorado, and won`t discount any forming over the northern and
central mountains this afternoon as CAPE values of around 200 J/kg
have been modeled. As the 120 kt jet max approaches central
Colorado by early this evening, QG upward motion will be maxing
out as well as CSI banding potential. Models have kept this area
of best ingredients pretty consistent, over the central mountains
stretched northeast to over the northern urban corridor. Some
slight trend south may allow for slightly higher amounts this
afternoon and evening over the plains. Still thinking the Advisory
area for zone 38 will do just fine as amounts should decrease
further south. Still looking for total amounts of 4 to 8 inches
over the mountains and northern foothills, with pockets of closer
to a foot over the high mountains mainly north of I70, and 3 to 6
inches over the northern urban corridor. Elsewhere on the plains
and southern foothills, amounts of less than 3 inches will likely
occur. Did have to bump up the far eastern plains as some
instability and lingering moisture out there will likely cause a
few hours this evening of slightly heavier snowfall.

Downward QG pushes in after midnight to start to shut down the
snowfall over most areas, however some light shallow upslope may
keep some light snow near the base of the foothills. Light snow
will continue over the mountains with orographic flow. After
today`s cold temperatures, additional cold advection from the
north will bring single digit or lower minimum temperatures

Northeastern Colorado will be under the left entrance region of
the jet Tuesday, however surface high pressure will be sliding
down from the northern Great Plains as well to create light
upslope. Will continue to see cold temperatures, light upslope
flow and possible light snow showers and light orographic snow in
the mountains.

.LONG TERM...(Tuesday night through Monday)
Issued at 310 PM MST Mon Feb 19 2018

Our winter of persistent weather patterns continues. This week`s
pattern features strong upper ridge off the southeastern United
States, a broad upper trough over the western half of the
country, and a high amplitude ridge over the northeastern
Pacific. This basic pattern stays in place through Thursday
evening and then undergoes some changes through the weekend. By
the start of next week most of the country will be under a zonal
flow pattern. For Colorado, the upper trough will be anchored
over Nevada with persistent southwesterly flow aloft across the
state. Quasi-geostrophic diagnosis and QPF fields from the medium
range models show a mostly dry day on Wednesday and then another
round of rising motion and precipitation on Thursday. Mountain
areas will receive the most precipitation from this Thursday
event. At lower levels, high pressure over the northern plains
will continue pouring cool air into northeast Colorado.
Temperatures will remain much below normal through Wednesday with
only slight moderation Thursday and Friday. It will be Sunday or
Monday before temperatures make it back to normal values.

Over the weekend, the ECMWF and GFS show the main trough beginning
to move eastward as another trough develops over the Alaska
panhandle and begins it trek southward toward what is still the
longwave trough position over the southwestern United States. The
departing trough should produce another round of mountain
precipitation during the Saturday/Sunday time frame.

The prevailing southwesterly flow pattern is not particularly
favorable for producing heavy snowfall in the northern mountains,
so only light to moderate amounts are expected at this time. No
need for any highlights. Plains weather should be dry and cool
through the end of the week, as the southwesterly flow aloft will
tend to have a downslope component downstream from the mountains.


.AVIATION...(For the 00Z TAFS through 00Z Tuesday evening)
Issued at 310 PM MST Mon Feb 19 2018

MVFR conditions at APA as some downsloping off the Palmer Divide
occurs. LIFR- IFR conditions at DEN and BJC. IFR-LIFR conditions
are expected to prevail at all airports later this afternoon and
into the night as snowbands move off the higher terrain. The
heavier snow bands should stay north- northwest of the metro
area, with a better chance of affecting BJC. Hires models showing
a push of snowbands between 02-06z over the airports, where 1/2sm
vis and cigs of less than 200 ft will occur. After 07z tonight
should see gradual improvement with precip ending in most areas
and cigs lifting towards morning. However, some light upslope flow
may allow for some isolated light snow showers tonight through
Tuesday afternoon.


Winter Weather Advisory until 5 AM MST Tuesday for COZ038.

Winter Weather Advisory until 5 AM MST Tuesday for COZ030>035.



SHORT TERM...Kriederman
LONG TERM...Dankers
AVIATION...Kriederman is the U.S. government's official web portal to all federal, state and local government web resources and services.