Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Missoula, MT
FXUS65 KMSO 152025
Area Forecast Discussion
National Weather Service Missoula MT
225 PM MDT Tue Apr 15 2014
.DISCUSSION...The Pacific front pushed through the region today
causing widespread showers and gusty westerly winds. The shower
activity is anticipated to diminish this evening as the atmosphere
stabilizes. Latest run of the models have backed off on the
strength of the polar front coming over the divide later tonight
into Wednesday. The front still appears to affect the Glacier Park
region, with Marias pass being impacted by snow on the road.
Confidence has been lowered for snow accumulating at MacDonald
pass, Homestake pass and the Georgetown Lake area.
Another surge of moisture and a destabilizing atmosphere on
Wednesday will cause increased shower activity. Snow levels will
remain around 4500 feet, so snow will be more of an impact to high
elevation valleys and mountain passes. Again the bulk of the snow
appears to fall during the day, so accumulations on roadways will
be minimal. A weak ridge of high pressure builds over the area by
Thursday causing a drying and warming trend for the Northern
Yet another trough of low pressure and an associated cold front
will move through western Montana and north central Idaho Thursday
night into Friday morning. The forecast models have sped this
system up a bit so it now looks like the heaviest precipitation
will occur Thursday evening into Friday morning. Some forecast
models are hinting at the development of convection ahead of the
front, which could cause some more intense precipitation and
possibly a few lightning strikes. While snow levels will generally
be fairly high during the bulk of the precipitation, higher
pass such as Lost Trail could receive some accumulating snow fall,
especially under areas of stronger convection. In addition, Friday
will be breezy as the front passes, possibly creating choppy
conditions on area lakes, particularly Flathead.
Forecast models continue to show a drying and warming trend for
the weekend, with temperatures warming back into the mid to upper 60s
for many valleys by Sunday. There is still a fair amount of
uncertainty for next week in terms of the strength and placement
of a Pacific low pressure system, but overall, early in the week
looks fairly mild with potential for afternoon showers and
.AVIATION...Widespread showers have developed this afternoon
with the possibility of an isolated lightning strike, mainly
across northwest Montana. This will lead to periodic reduced
visibility/ceiling and obscuration of the higher terrain. In
addition gusty west winds will be possible through this evening,
particularly in the vicinity of shower activity. Shower activity
will die off late this evening as the atmosphere stabilizes.
North-easterly winds due to another front can be expected along
the Continental Divide and into northwest Montana overnight,
mainly affecting KGPI. Snow with this second front will obscure
terrain along the Divide through Wednesday.
MT...WINTER WEATHER ADVISORY from 6 PM this evening to Noon MDT
Wednesday for Marias Pass IN THE West Glacier Region.
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