Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Buffalo, NY

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FXUS61 KBUF 181840
AFDBUF

AREA FORECAST DISCUSSION
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE BUFFALO NY
140 PM EST THU DEC 18 2014

.SYNOPSIS...
LOW LEVEL MOISTURE AND A SURFACE TROUGH ACROSS THE REGION WILL
PRODUCE SOME PATCHY FREEZING DRIZZLE AND SNOW FLURRIES THIS
AFTERNOON INTO TONIGHT. HIGH PRESSURE WILL RETURN BY FRIDAY AND
SATURDAY WITH DRYING CONDITIONS AND NEAR NORMAL TEMPERATURES. A
STORM SYSTEM DEVELOPING OVER THE GREAT LAKES CONTINUES TO LOOK
POSSIBLE AROUND THE CHRISTMAS HOLIDAY WHICH COULD BRING GUSTY WINDS
AND RAIN CHANGING TO SNOW.

&&

.NEAR TERM /THROUGH FRIDAY/...
UPDATED THE FORECAST THIS AFTERNOON WITH A WINTER WEATHER ADVISORY.
KBUF AND KTYX RADARS ARE BOTH SHOWING LIGHT RETURNS ACROSS THE
FORECAST AREA AND AFTER A FEW CALLS FOR SURFACE REPORTS HAVE
DETERMINED THESE RETURNS ARE MOST LIKELY FREEZING DRIZZLE. BUFKIT
SOUNDINGS AND IR SAT TEMPS SUPPORT THIS WITH MOISTURE ALL FOUND
DISPLACED BELOW THE -10C TEMP NEEDED WITHIN THE CLOUDS TO PRODUCE
ICE CRYSTALS AND SNOW. HAVE RAN THE ADVISORY OUT THROUGH 7PM FOR
NOW BUT THERE STILL REMAINS A CHANCE THAT THIS WILL NEED TO BE
EXTENDED AS MOISTURE AND TEMPERATURE PROFILES REMAIN UNCHANGED
THROUGH THE OVERNIGHT HOURS.

LOW PRESSURE IS CENTERED OVER THE CANADIAN MARITIMES WITH A SURFACE
TROUGH EXTENDED WEST ACROSS THE LOWER GREAT LAKES. THIS WILL KEEP
COOL WESTERLY FLOW ACROSS OUR REGION TODAY. THIN MOISTURE PROFILES
AND WEAK LIFT WILL KEEP CLOUDY SKIES IN PLACE. A SLACKENING PRESSURE
GRADIENT WILL STILL KEEP SOME BREEZY WINDS ACROSS THE REGION WHICH
WILL COMBINE WITH TEMPERATURES ONLY IN THE LOW 30S TO KEEP WIND
CHILLS IN THE MIDDLE TEENS TO MIDDLE 20S. UNDER CONTINUED AND
PERSISTENT COLD AIR ADVECTION...LOW TEMPS TONIGHT FALL ANOTHER NOTCH
WITH READINGS IN THE TEENS EAST OF LAKE ONTARIO AND THE MIDDLE 20S
OVER THE REST OF FORECAST AREA.

ON FRIDAY THE LOW LEVEL MOISTURE PROFILES KEEP LOW LEVEL OVERCAST IN
PLACE ACROSS WESTERN AND NORTH-CENTRAL NEW YORK. WHILE SKIES MAY
BEGIN TO CLEAR OVER THE LAKES A NORTHWEST UPSLOPE FLOW WILL KEEP
GRAY SKIES AROUND OVER THE LAND THROUGH THE DAY. THERE STILL REMAINS
A CHANCE FOR SOME PATCHY FREEZING DRIZZLE OR FLURRIES AS THE CLOUDS
REMAIN WARMER THAN THE -10C THROUGH FRIDAY. TEMPERATURES WILL BE
COOLER ONLY RISING INTO THE MID TO UPPER 20S DUE TO THE CLOUD COVER
AND NORTHWEST COLD ADVECTION.

&&

.SHORT TERM /FRIDAY NIGHT THROUGH SATURDAY/...
HIGH PRESSURE WILL BUILD STEADILY INTO THE REGION FRIDAY NIGHT...
EVENTUALLY CENTERING ITSELF ACROSS THE AREA BY SATURDAY. MODEL
SOUNDINGS/CROSS-SECTION MOISTURE ANALYSIS CONTINUES TO SUPPORT LOW
CLOUDS HANGING ON FOR MUCH OF WESTERN AND NORTH CENTRAL NEW YORK
FRIDAY NIGHT...WITH COOLING BOUNDARY LAYER AND STRONG SUBSIDENCE
INVERSION LOCKING IN STRATUS DURING THIS TIME.

INCREASINGLY DRIER PROFILES DURING SATURDAY SHOULD EVENTUALLY BRING
AT LEAST PARTIAL SUNSHINE TO THE AREA. THE MOST SUNSHINE WILL LIKELY
BE FOUND ACROSS THE SAINT LAWRENCE RIVER VALLEY AND THE NORTH
COUNTRY.

TEMPERATURES LOOK TO BE NEAR SEASONAL READINGS FOR THIS TIME OF THE
YEAR...WITH HIGHS GRADUALLY MODERATING FROM THE MID 20S/LOWER 30S
FRIDAY TO THE LOWER/MID 30S SATURDAY. OVERNIGHT LOWS MOSTLY IN THE
TEENS AND 20S.

&&

.LONG TERM /SATURDAY NIGHT THROUGH THURSDAY/...
SATURDAY NIGHT THROUGH MONDAY NIGHT LOOKS RATHER UNEVENTFUL. 12Z
GFS/ECMWF/GGEM GUIDANCE CONTINUE TO BRING JUST A WEAK UPPER LEVEL
TROUGH ACROSS OUR REGION AND DO NOT PHASE THIS SHORTWAVE LIKE RUNS
EARLIER IN THE WEEK DID. THIS MAY BRING LIGHT SNOW SHOWERS OR
FLURRIES TO OUR REGION...BUT THERE IS INCREASING CONFIDENCE THAT
THERE WILL BE LITTLE IF ANY IMPACT FROM THIS SYSTEM. MOST 12Z
GUIDANCE DOES NOT EVEN BRING MEASURABLE QPF TO THE REGION.
OTHERWISE...WEAK SURFACE HIGH PRESSURE WILL DRIFT INTO NORTHERN NEW
ENGLAND...WITH PARTLY CLOUDY SKIES AND SEASONABLE TEMPERATURES.

AFTER THIS...A MUCH MORE ACTIVE WEATHER PATTERN IS LIKELY TO
DEVELOP. A CLOSED 500 MB LOW FORECAST TO BE NEAR THE GREAT LAKES
REGION TUESDAY MORNING WILL PIVOT A STRONG SHORTWAVE AROUND IT AND
SPARK STRONG LOW PRESSURE WHICH IS FORECAST TO TRACK UP THE EASTERN
STATES WRAP BACK INTO THE UPPER LOW. THIS GENERAL SCENARIO IS
SUPPORTED BY AN EXCELLENT CONSENSUS AMONG 12Z AND PREVIOUS RUNS OF
THE GFS/ECMWF. THIS WOULD RESULT IN AN ANOMALOUSLY DEEP LOW OF
AROUND 965MB ACROSS THE GREAT LAKES REGION ON WEDNESDAY.

ALTHOUGH THIS GENERAL SCENARIO IS LIKELY TO PLAY OUT...THE SPECIFIC
TRACK AND EVOLUTION OF THIS SYSTEM WILL DETERMINE OUR WEATHER...AND
THESE SPECIFICS ARE STILL UNCERTAIN. BASED ON THE CONSENSUS SOLUTION
THERE ARE A FEW CONCLUSIONS THAT CAN BE DRAWN. FIRST...THE MOST
SIGNIFICANT IMPACT FROM THIS SYSTEM IS LIKELY TO BE STRONG WINDS.
MODEL VARIABILITY MAKES IT DIFFICULT TO DETERMINE WHEN AND
WHERE...BUT STRONG TO DAMAGING WINDS MAY OCCUR IN SOME LOCATIONS
TUESDAY NIGHT AND/OR WEDNESDAY. ALSO...THE INITIAL ROUND OF
PRECIPITATION FROM THIS SYSTEM IS LIKELY TO BE RAIN ON TUESDAY NIGHT
OR WEDNESDAY. NEARLY ALL GUIDANCE HAS TEMPERATURES WELL TOO WARM TO
SUPPORT SNOW INITIALLY. SO AS IT STANDS NOW...CHRISTMAS EVE LOOKS TO
BE A RAINY AND WINDY DAY...WITH ABOVE NORMAL TEMPERATURES.

LOOKING A BIT FURTHER...TEMPERATURES SHOULD COOL CHRISTMAS DAY AND
BEYOND. THIS WILL PROBABLY CHANGE OVER PRECIPITATION TO SNOW BUT
SIGNIFICANT...OR ANY...ACCUMULATION IS STILL HIGHLY UNCERTAIN. THE
MOST NOTABLE WEATHER FEATURE FOR CHRISTMAS DAY MAY AGAIN BE STRONG
WINDS...WITH CONSENSUS GUIDANCE STALLING THE STRONG LOW NEAR THE
UPPER LAKES. AGAIN...IT IS IMPORTANT TO NOTE THAT MODEL GUIDANCE IS
LIKELY TO VARY FROM RUN TO RUN...AND SIGNIFICANT SHIFTS IN THE TRACK
AND POSITION OF THE LOW ARE STILL VERY POSSIBLE WITH THE FORECAST
STILL A WEEK AWAY.

&&

.AVIATION /19Z THURSDAY THROUGH TUESDAY/...
LOW LEVEL MOISTURE WILL REMAIN ACROSS THE REGION TODAY INTO FRIDAY
AS A SURFACE TROUGH LINGERS ACROSS THE EASTERN GREAT LAKES TO NEW
ENGLAND. MVFR AND HILL TOP IFR CIGS ARE FOUND WITH REPORTS OF PATCHY
FREEZING DRIZZLE. WEST WINDS WITH VEER TO NORTHWEST AS THE SURFACE
LOW OVER THE CANADIAN MARITIMES MOVES FURTHER AWAY. MOISTURE AND
TEMPERATURE PROFILES REMAIN STAGNANT THROUGH THE OVERNIGHT HOURS
WHICH LEAVES HIGH CONFIDENCE FOR OVERCAST MVFR/IFR CIGS LINGERING.
PATCHY FREEZING DRIZZLE MAY ALSO CONTINUE INTO THE OVERNIGHT.

OUTLOOK...
FRIDAY NIGHT...MVFR TO IFR WITH CHANCES OF FREEZING DRIZZLE OR LIGHT
SNOW SHOWERS ENDING.
SATURDAY TO MONDAY...VFR.
TUESDAY...VFR/MVFR WITH A CHANCE OF RAIN SHOWERS.

&&

.MARINE...
WINDS AND WAVES WILL GRADUALLY SUBSIDE TODAY INTO THIS EVENING AS
LOW PRESSURE MOVES FARTHER EAST AND AWAY FROM THE AREA AND HIGH
PRESSURE BUILDS INTO THE LOWER GREAT LAKES. THIS WILL USHER IN A
PERIOD OF MORE TRANQUIL CONDITIONS ON THE LAKES FOR FRIDAY AND THE
WEEKEND.

&&

.BUF WATCHES/WARNINGS/ADVISORIES...
NY...WINTER WEATHER ADVISORY UNTIL 7 PM EST THIS EVENING FOR
     NYZ001>008-010>014-019>021-085.
MARINE...SMALL CRAFT ADVISORY UNTIL 10 PM EST THIS EVENING FOR LEZ040-
         041.
         SMALL CRAFT ADVISORY UNTIL 10 PM EST THIS EVENING FOR
         LOZ042.
         SMALL CRAFT ADVISORY UNTIL 4 AM EST FRIDAY FOR LOZ043>045.

&&

$$

SYNOPSIS...SMITH
NEAR TERM...SMITH/WCH
SHORT TERM...TMA/SMITH
LONG TERM...APFFEL
AVIATION...SMITH/WCH
MARINE...SMITH/WCH








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