Fire Weather Outlook Discussion
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FNUS21 KWNS 281512

Day 1 Fire Weather Outlook
NWS Storm Prediction Center Norman OK
1012 AM CDT Tue Mar 28 2017

Valid 281700Z - 291200Z


Complicated fire weather scenario will unfold later today as a deep
cut off low traverses the Southern Rockies.  Latest thinking is that
near-critical fire weather conditions will develop in highlighted
areas of the higher terrain of southwest Texas northward into
southeastern New Mexico as a dryline makes some progress eastward
toward the Lubbock/Midland areas this afternoon.  Insolation is
ongoing at this time (especially in southern portions of this area)
and current thinking is that, despite approaching cloudiness
associated with a lobe of ascent near the mid-level low, sufficient
mixing should occur to foster critical fire weather conditions this
afternoon.  West of this area (near El Paso and surrounding areas),
RH values should generally remain high enough to preclude the need
for critical highlights and the attendant delineation has been
removed from these areas.

Farther west, critical fire weather conditions remain likely amidst
dry fuels in the immediate Lower Colorado River Valley region.
Additionally, the presence of substantial drying/subsidence on the
west side of the upper low may foster more pronounced low-level
warming/drying than currently indicated in parts of
southern/southeastern Arizona.  Locally critical fire weather
conditions may develop there for a couple of hours this afternoon as
a result, although confidence in exceeding temporal critical
thresholds (greater than 3 hours of critical conditions) remains a
bit too low to introduce any upgrades with this outlook update.

See the previous outlook below for more information.

..Cook.. 03/28/2017

.PREV DISCUSSION... /ISSUED 0249 AM CDT Tue Mar 28 2017/

A strong midlevel cyclone is forecast to track from the Southwest
States to the southern High Plains. As this occurs, surface low
pressure will deepen over the southern High Plains, while an
attendant dryline sharpens. Strong tropospheric flow surrounding the
cyclone will overlie the relatively deeper boundary layer and dry
surface conditions west of the dryline.

...Portions of the Southwest States to the southern High Plains...
Across the Critical area covering portions of southern NM and west
TX, downslope trajectories extending off the southern Rockies and
related warming/drying will allow RH to fall to 10-15 percent to the
west of the dryline. Deep mixing into the strong tropospheric flow
will support southwesterly to westerly winds of 20-25 mph with
higher gusts.

A separate Critical area is in effect for portions of the lower CO
River Valley and vicinity in areas where dry fuels exist. A belt of
northerly/north-northwesterly winds within the western semicircle of
the cyclone will be enhanced via flow channeling in the low levels.
As a result, wind speeds of 20-25 mph with higher gusts are
expected. Deep subsidence over this part of the cyclone and related
drying will be manifest at the surface as minimum RH in the upper
single digits.

An Elevated area is in effect for locations between/surrounding the
Critical areas. Strong winds are anticipated from parts of southeast
AZ into southwest NM, though comparatively cooler temperatures and
higher RH should mitigate the overall fire-weather risk in these

...Please see for graphic product...

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