Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Buffalo, NY

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000
FXUS61 KBUF 190327
AFDBUF

AREA FORECAST DISCUSSION
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE BUFFALO NY
1027 PM EST THU DEC 18 2014

.SYNOPSIS...
LOW LEVEL MOISTURE AND A SURFACE TROUGH ACROSS THE REGION WILL
PRODUCE AREAS OF FREEZING DRIZZLE AND SNOW FLURRIES THROUGH TONIGHT
WITH FREEZING DRIZZLE GRADUALLY TAPERING OFF FRIDAY AS HIGH PRESSURE
SLOWLY BUILDS ACROSS THE REGION FRIDAY INTO SATURDAY. THE HIGH WILL
EVENTUALLY BRING DRYING CONDITIONS WITH NEAR NORMAL TEMPERATURES
THIS WEEKEND. 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/...
REGIONAL RADAR CONTINUES TO SHOW FAINT RETURNS ACROSS MUCH OF THE
FORECAST AREA THIS EVENING AND THIS IS TRANSLATING TO WIDESPREAD
OBSERVATIONS OF FREEZING DRIZZLE...THANKS LARGELY TO AN ABUNDANCE OF
SHALLOW LOW LEVEL MOISTURE TRAPPED WITHIN A STALLED OUT SURFACE
TROUGH UNDERNEATH A STRONG SUBSIDENCE INVERSION NEAR 850MB COUPLED
WITH ONSHORE MOISTURE TRANSPORT ON CYCLONIC WEST-NORTHWEST UPSLOPE
FLOW. WHILE RETURNS HAVE WEAKENED SOMEWHAT OVER THE LAST COUPLE OF
HOURS...LITTLE HAS CHANGED IN TERMS OF THE BASIC METEOROLOGICAL
SETUP...SO EXPECT TO CONTINUE TO SEE WIDESPREAD LIGHT PRECIPITATION
ACROSS A SIGNIFICANT PORTION OF THE FORECAST AREA. WITH SUB-FREEZING
SURFACE TEMPERATURES AND DRY AIR ABOVE THE -10C LEVEL...THIS
PRECIPITATION IS LARGELY TAKING THE FORM OF FREEZING DRIZZLE...WITH
FLURRIES MIXING IN AT TIMES. THE WIDESPREAD LOW CLOUD COVER WILL
SIGNIFICANTLY REDUCE DIURNAL TEMPERATURE SWINGS AND AS SUCH HAVE
BUMPED UP THE OVERNIGHT LOWS BY A FEW DEGREES...WITH READINGS ONLY
EXPECTED TO DIP INTO THE MID TO UPPER 20S.

THE CLOUDY WEATHER WILL PERSIST THROUGHOUT THE DAY ON FRIDAY AS THE
SURFACE TROUGH GRADUALLY WEAKENS IN PLACE IN THE FACE OF GRADUALLY
ENCROACHING HIGH PRESSURE TO THE WEST. EVEN WITH THE TROUGH
WEAKENING HOWEVER...MOISTURE WILL STILL REMAIN TRAPPED BENEATH AN
EVER-STEEPENING INVERSION ALOFT...ENSURING A CONTINUATION OF THE
GLOOMY WEATHER WE HAVE BEEN EXPERIENCING FOR THE BETTER PART OF A
WEEK. DRIZZLE SHOULD TAPER OFF FOR THE MOST PART BY LATE MORNING
WITH THE WEAKENING OF THE SURFACE TROUGH...THOUGH THE CHANCE FOR
FREEZING DRIZZLE WILL PERSIST INTO THE AFTERNOON HOURS SOUTHEAST OF
LAKE ONTARIO THANKS TO PERSISTENT NORTHWESTERLY FLOW. ONCE AGAIN THE
CLOUD COVER WILL DAMPEN ANY DIURNAL TEMPERATURE SWINGS WITH HIGHS
ONLY EXPECTED TO CREEP INTO THE UPPER 20S TO AROUND 30 WITH HIGHER
ELEVATIONS REMAINING TRAPPED IN THE MID 20S.

&&

.SHORT TERM /FRIDAY NIGHT THROUGH SUNDAY/...
HIGH PRESSURE WILL SLOWLY DRIFT ACROSS THE REGION THIS
WEEKEND...SHIFTING FROM THE UPPER LAKES FRIDAY NIGHT TO NORTHERN NEW
ENGLAND ON SUNDAY. 12Z NAM/GFS/RGEM GUIDANCE CONTINUES TO BE DRY
WITH THE PASSAGE OF A COUPLE OF WEAK SHORTWAVES...SO HAVE REMOVED
POPS AND OPTED FOR A DRY WEEKEND FORECAST.

PROBABLY THE BIGGEST FORECAST CHALLENGE IS HOW MUCH CLOUD COVER WILL
REMAIN...WITH A WEAKER BUT STILL PRESENT INVERSION AT A FEW THOUSAND
FEET. EXPECT AT LEAST FRIDAY NIGHT TO BE MOSTLY CLOUDY...BUT ON
SATURDAY BUFKIT SHOWS A STAGNANT FLOW WITH VERY SHALLOW MOISTURE
BENEATH THE INVERSION. THIS MAY ALLOW THE LIMITED DECEMBER SUNSHINE
TO CHIP AWAY AT THIS...WITH SOME BREAKS OF SUNSHINE SATURDAY. THE
BEST CHANCE FOR THIS WILL BE EAST OF LAKE ONTARIO AND ACROSS THE
NORTH COUNTRY. FOR SATURDAY NIGHT AND SUNDAY...EXPECT SOME
BREAKS...BUT IN ALL MORE CLOUDS THAN SUN FOR THE UPCOMING WEEKEND.

TEMPERATURES LOOK TO BE NEAR SEASONAL READINGS FOR THIS TIME OF THE
YEAR...WITH HIGHS IN THE UPPER 20S TO LOWER 30S ON SATURDAY...AND A
COUPLE DEGREES WARMER THAN THIS ON SUNDAY.

&&

.LONG TERM /SUNDAY NIGHT THROUGH THURSDAY/...
HIGH PRESSURE CENTERED NEAR MAINE WILL RIDGE BACK INTO OUR REGION
SUNDAY NIGHT INTO MONDAY...BRINGING FAIR AND SEASONABLE WEATHER TO
THE REGION. AFTER THIS A DEEPENING TROUGH ACROSS THE NATIONS
MID-SECTION WILL LIFT A WARM FRONT SW-NE TOWARD OUR REGION ON MONDAY
NIGHT OR TUESDAY. GFS/ECMWF/GGEM DIFFER ON THE TIMING OF THIS...BUT
ALL HAVE THE FEATURE TO SOME EXTENT. THIS WILL BRING A CHANCE OF
PRIMARILY RAIN SHOWERS...WITH AMOUNTS EXPECTED TO BE LIGHT.

THINGS GET MORE INTERESTING...WITH A STRONG STORM SYSTEM LIKELY
TO DEVELOP MID-WEEK. A CLOSED 500 MB LOW FORECAST TO BE NEAR
MICHIGAN WEDNESDAY MORNING WILL PIVOT A STRONG SHORTWAVE AROUND IT
WHICH WILL DEVELOP A STRONG SURFACE LOW FORECAST TO TRACK UP THE
EASTERN STATES AND WRAP BACK INTO THE UPPER LOW. THIS GENERAL
SCENARIO CONTINUES TO BE SUPPORTED BY 12Z GUIDANCE OF THE
GFS/ECMWF/GGEM...WHICH IS ALSO IN LINE WITH THE PAST SEVERAL RUNS. A
12Z CONSENSUS IS A BIT WEAKER AND SLOWER DEVELOPING THE LOW...BUT
STILL HAS A STRONG SYSTEM ACROSS SOUTHERN QUEBEC OR ONTARIO ON
CHRISTMAS DAY.

FOR OUR REGION...IT WEDNESDAY STILL LOOKS TO BE A RAINY AND WINDY
DAY. CONSENSUS GUIDANCE STILL HAS OUR REGION PRIMARILY IN THE WARM
SECTOR UNTIL THE LOW LIFTS TO THE NORTH WEDNESDAY NIGHT WHICH WILL
ALLOW LINGERING PRECIPITATION TO MIX WITH SNOW. CHRISTMAS DAY
LOOKS TO BE A WINDY DAY...WITH SOME LAKE ENHANCED AND/OR UPSLOPE
SNOW SHOWERS WHICH MAY MIX WITH RAIN AT TIMES. 850MB TEMPS SHOULD
ONLY BE -6 TO -8C...WHICH IS MARGINALLY COLD ENOUGH FOR SNOW.

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. THE MOST LIKELY IMPACT OF THIS
SYSTEM STILL APPEARS TO BE STRONG TO POSSIBLY DAMAGING WINDS. 12Z
GUIDANCE HAS BACKED OFF A BIT ON FORECAST WIND SPEEDS...BUT THIS
COULD EASILY CHANGE IN FUTURE RUNS. THERE IS ALSO A POTENTIAL FOR
ACCUMULATING SNOWFALL STARTING LATE WEDNESDAY NIGHT THROUGH
CHRISTMAS DAY. GIVEN MARGINAL 850MB TEMPERATURES...THIS DOES NOT
APPEAR TO BE A PROLIFIC SNOW PRODUCER. THE MOIST CYCLONIC
FLOW AND UPSLOPING MAY BE ENOUGH FOR SOME SNOW ACCUMULATION...MOST
LIKELY TO BE IN THE TRADITIONAL SNOW BELTS. HOWEVER THIS COULD
CHANGE TOO IF MODEL CONSENSUS SHIFTS THE POSITION OF THE SURFACE
LOW. THE POTENTIAL FOR SIGNIFICANT...OR ANY...ACCUMULATION IS STILL
HIGHLY UNCERTAIN. 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 LONG WAYS OFF.

&&

.AVIATION /04Z FRIDAY THROUGH TUESDAY/...
REGIONAL RADAR CONTINUES TO SHOW SUBTLE RETURNS INDICATING AREAS OF
FREEZING DRIZZLE CONTINUING TO STREAM OFF OF THE LAKES AND ACROSS
WESTERN AND NORTH-CENTRAL NEW YORK THIS EVENING. WHILE RETURNS HAVE
WEAKENED SOMEWHAT OVER THE LAST COUPLE OF HOURS AND PRECIP HAS ENDED
FOR THE TIME BEING AT SEVERAL SITES...THE OVERALL METEOROLOGICAL
PICTURE HAS CHANGED LITTLE WITH AN ABUNDANCE OF LOW LEVEL MOISTURE
THAT CONTINUES TO LINGER IN CONJUNCTION WITH A SURFACE TROUGH THAT
WILL REMAIN IN PLACE THROUGHOUT THE FORECAST PERIOD. THUS EXPECT
WIDESPREAD MVFR/IFR CIGS TO REMAIN IN PLACE THROUGHOUT THE PERIOD
WITH IFR CONDITIONS PRIMARILY CONFINED TO HIGHER ELEVATIONS. FZDZ
WILL REMAIN POSSIBLE THROUGH THE REST OF THE NIGHT ACROSS VIRTUALLY
ALL OF THE FORECAST AREA AS FLOW REMAINS WEST-NORTHWEST...ONSHORE
AND UPSLOPE. PRECIP SHOULD TAPER OFF AS WE MOVE THROUGH THE MORNING
HOURS ON FRIDAY...THOUGH MVFR CIGS MAY HANG ON FOR MUCH OF THE DAY.

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 HAVE SUBSIDED THIS EVENING AS LOW PRESSURE HAS MOVED
FARTHER EAST AND AWAY FROM THE AREA WITH HIGH PRESSURE NOW STARTING
TO BUILD INTO THE LOWER GREAT LAKES. ALL SMALL CRAFT ADVISORIES HAVE
BEEN CANCELLED THIS EVENING AS WINDS AND WAVES ARE ALREADY DROPPING
OFF ACROSS THE AREA. THIS AREA OF HIGH PRESSURE WILL USHER IN A
PERIOD OF MORE TRANQUIL CONDITIONS ON THE LAKES FOR FRIDAY AND THE
WEEKEND AS IT MOVES OVER THE REGION.

&&

.BUF WATCHES/WARNINGS/ADVISORIES...
NY...WINTER WEATHER ADVISORY UNTIL 8 AM EST FRIDAY FOR NYZ001>008-
     010>014-019>021-085.
MARINE...NONE.

&&

$$

SYNOPSIS...SMITH/WOOD
NEAR TERM...WOOD
SHORT TERM...APFFEL
LONG TERM...APFFEL
AVIATION...WOOD
MARINE...WOOD







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