Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Grand Rapids, MI

Home | Current Version | Previous Version | Text Only | Print | Product List | Glossary Off
Versions: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 48 49 50

FXUS63 KGRR 220828

Area Forecast Discussion
National Weather Service Grand Rapids MI
328 AM EST Thu Feb 22 2018

Synopsis/Short Term/Long Term

Issued at 328 AM EST Thu Feb 22 2018

Surface high pressure over the area this morning will result in
mostly cloudy skies and afternoon temperatures slightly above
normal between 35 to 40 degrees. The next system comes through the
area tonight into Friday morning. This will bring the threat of
some light freezing rain, possibly mixed with sleet and snow over
northern sections late tonight into mid morning Friday. It will
warm enough that all areas will see just rain showers my mid to
late morning Friday. That will be followed by a surface high
Friday night into Saturday morning. However a much stronger system
from the southern plains deepens rapidly and comes through
Southwest Michigan Saturday night. This time it should be warm
enough that most areas will just have rain showers. Our northeast
sections could see a little freezing rain Saturday night however.
This system moves out of the area by Sunday evening.


.SHORT TERM...(Today through Saturday)
Issued at 328 AM EST Thu Feb 22 2018

Our main forecast issues for this forecast package is the threat
of freezing rain and sleet late tonight into the mid morning hours
of Friday. The question is will there be enough ice to warrant a
Winter Weather Advisory. Since for the most part the energy with
this system bifurcates Southwest Michigan (north and south of
here), we do not get much in the way of total precipitation
amounts. Also considering air temperatures should go above
freezing today and skies will be cloudy tonight I wonder if air
temperatures will even get below freezing over most of our CWA
tonight in the first place. Based on the questionable nature of
the freezing rain in the first place and even if it happens is
likely to have minimal impacts, I do not intend to issue an

As for the "BIG PICTURE", we still have large upper level high
over the Southeastern CONUS with our Polar Vortex upper low
displaced southward into Hudson Bay with a deep trough over the
western CONUS. This creates a "Train track" set up for surface
lows to follow toward the Great Lakes area. This pattern finally
breaks down early next week, but until then we will continue to
see systems coming out of the western trough into the Great Lakes.

The next system bifurcates us tonight into Friday, meaning the
deep moisture and southern stream energy stay south of us and the
jet lift event on polar jet core will stay north of us. We get
minimal amounts of precipitation with this sort of set up. So,
while it is likely we will see some light precipitation between
midnight and sunrise, it will be light, mostly less than a tenth
of an inch.

Once that comes through we wait for the next system which is
talked about in the Long Term discussion.

.LONG TERM...(Saturday night through Wednesday)
Issued at 328 AM EST Thu Feb 22 2018

The ecmwf continues the trend it started yesterday in that`s it
quickly moving toward the gfs solution for the storm moving through
the Great Lakes this weekend. The reason for this is the development
of the upper trough on the ecmwf.

The ecmwf sfc low is roughly 10mb lower than the 00z run yesterday
and is now only 10mb higher than the gfs. Both tracks take the low
through Wisconsin which places the cwa in the warm sector. However,
this system will occlude around the time it gets to Lake Michigan
and so the warmest air will be pushed off to the southeast. Models
also indicate the heaviest precipitation will remain southeast of
the cwa on the convective side and well to the northwest on the cold
side. We`re looking at around a quarter inch of pcpn possible
Saturday night and early Sunday. It`s also possible that there could
be some mixed precipitation in the form of snow/sleet/freezing rain
over the northeast cwa Saturday evening before warmer air moves in.
The low is progd to deepen as it moves by and so Sunday could be
rather breezy.

Mostly dry weather is expected from late Sunday through early
Wednesday when the gfs develops another low in Oklahoma and moves it
toward the Great Lakes. The ecmwf isn`t remotely close to the gfs
with this system nor is the canadian model so we`re not going
overboard with pops.

Highs in the mid 40s are expected during the extended which is
roughly 10 degrees above normal.


.AVIATION...(For the 00Z TAFS through 00Z Thursday evening)
Issued at 645 PM EST Wed Feb 21 2018

Ceilings around 1500 to 2500 feet AGL across central and southern
Lower Michigan will clear out this evening with VFR conditions
expected into Thursday afternoon. By late afternoon MVFR
conditions will return across the southern areas from near AZO to
JXN as lower stratus clouds move north.


Issued at 327 PM EST Wed Feb 21 2018

Most recent observations along some of the smaller streams have
indicated that levels are nearing their peaks. Most smaller streams
and rivers will do so between now and Wednesday evening. Larger
rivers continue to rise with the greatest impacts to come later in
the week and into the weekend. Overall, observed river levels have
line up fairly well with forecast trends and most adjustments have
been minor with each update.

Areal flooding will subside through the evening or has already
subsided, while the greatest concern going forward will exist along
the larger rivers through the weekend. Particular focus will be on
the Red Cedar River and Grand River as rises continue to impact the
Lansing area and water funnels downstream to Grand Rapids. River
levels in Lansing and Grand Rapids will be among some of the
historical crests. Levels in Grand Rapids could come close to 2013
levels, while levels around Lansing will be most comparable to 1975.
Many roads and locations along each of the river are already
impacted and will only continue to see waters rise this weekend.

Various other rivers through Southwest Lower Michigan continue to
experience minor to moderate flooding. Impacts expressed in previous
discussions remain valid and recent advisory/warning products can be
referenced for impacts specific to each river and site.

Light rain is expected to bring about one-tenth of an inch of
precipitation late Thursday into Friday. This will have no impact on
current forecasts. The next system will come over the weekend, late
Saturday into Sunday with around one-quarter to around three-tenths
of an inch. These amounts may stall improvement slightly. However,
this system will be one to watch, as higher precipitation amounts
are just south of Lower Michigan and any northward adjustment could
further impact forecasts. For now, no additional impacts are




HYDROLOGY...JAM is the U.S. government's official web portal to all federal, state and local government web resources and services.