Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Grand Forks, ND

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FXUS63 KFGF 181755
AFDFGF

Area Forecast Discussion
National Weather Service Grand Forks ND
1255 PM CDT Sat Mar 18 2017

.UPDATE...
Issued at 1254 PM CDT Sat Mar 18 2017

The low clouds continue to break up to the east of the Red River
Valley, but it appears it will take the longest to scour out in
the immediate valley. Meanwhile thicker mid level clouds have been
moving in from central North Dakota, so any clearing will probably
be fairly short lived. Temperatures have been slow to rise, but
this will be a tough day to nail down highs, as temperatures will
continue to rise into the evening and overnight.

&&

.SHORT TERM...(Today and tonight)
Issued at 321 AM CDT Sat Mar 18 2017

Challenge for today will be temps as the stratus deck lingering
across the MN half of the forecast area continues to be much
slower than guidance suggests. 500mb ridging and SFC high pressure
both working towards the area from the west. Will see much less
wind today with cirrus filtered skies as cirrus continues to spill
over the top of the ridge and drift over eastern North Dakota.
Clouds this morning in the east limiting temperature dropoff and
will be starting warming than previously forecast. However clouds
will limit daytime warming with stratus lingering in the east and
high level cirrus to the west. Max temps in the 30s north and low
40s south will be similar to yesterday with much less wind. As
the SFC high slides east return flow sets up and the pressure
gradient will continue to increase overnight allowing south winds
to ramp up with 15 to 25kt by 12Z Sunday, highest speeds in the
northern valley. Increased winds will cause temps to be steady to
possibly raise a few degrees overnight after a early minimum temp
reading from late Saturday night or very early Sunday.

.LONG TERM...(Sunday through Friday)
Issued at 321 AM CDT Sat Mar 18 2017

By Sunday modeled thermal profiles show 925mb temps rising into
the 5 to 10C range and efficiently warming southwest to west SFC
winds bringing a warm day to the FA, around 60 in the southern
valley to near 40 in the northern snow covered areas. A cold front
will work across the area Sunday afternoon with increasing clouds
high and mid level clouds. Any showers Sunday will be isolated
as moisture below 700mb remains limited on model soundings.
In the wake of the cold front cooler temps are expected for Monday
with 925mb temps ranging from 5C in the SE ND to -5C in N MN,
producing highs from near 45F in the south to 35F across the
north as another high pressure system moves into the northern
plains.

The mid to late week period is expected to become more stormy.  But
how stormy, temperature profiles and timing are quite variable among
the three global models (GFS, GEM, ECMWF).  Thus low confidence for
the Tue-Fri period in terms of precipitation type and amount.  The
highest confidence is for the Thursday period when low pressure will
move to our south but the upper level short wave will move over
giving a widespread rain event, that could end as some snow.  QPF
amounts in the 0.50 to 0.75 inch range is possible.  The next system
for later Friday is more variable with ECMWF dry and south while
GEM/GFS farther north.  Also a bit colder temp profiles with this
system.  Area WFO`s stuck with the blended solutions with no changes
and that seemed reasonable given the many unknowns.

&&

.AVIATION...(For the 18Z TAFS through 18Z Sunday afternoon)
Issued at 1254 PM CDT Sat Mar 18 2017

Definitely a challenging aviation forecast, mainly due the low
clouds this morning. Speaking of these low clouds, they are
finally beginning to break up from the east and south. Therefore,
expect these to break up first at KBJI and KFAR, but it will take
longer at KGFK and KTVF. Think this will occur over the next few
hours, but will adjust if this does not work out. Otherwise mid
level clouds will continue to spread into the FA too. Light winds
now will become SE and increase through the day, becoming fairly
gusty overnight. Along with the increase in winds overnight, there
is a fairly strong low level jet. There will also be strong warm
advection tonight, so not expecting these strong winds to mix
down to the surface, but it should create a favorable environment
for low level wind shear. Threw in LLWS for all TAF sites
overnight into Sunday morning.

&&

.FGF WATCHES/WARNINGS/ADVISORIES...
ND...None.
MN...None.
&&

$$

UPDATE...Godon
SHORT TERM...JK
LONG TERM...JK/Riddle
AVIATION...Godon



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