Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Bismarck, ND

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FXUS63 KBIS 251434

Area Forecast Discussion
National Weather Service Bismarck ND
834 AM CST Sun Feb 25 2018

Issued at 829 AM CST Sun Feb 25 2018

Updated clouds to follow satellite trends by increasing clouds
north central and decreasing clouds southwest into the south
central this morning. Kept flurries north central through the
morning based on Minot radar returns.

UPDATE Issued at 630 AM CST Sun Feb 25 2018

Added a mention of flurries to the north central this morning as
some light returns are showing up within the area of stratus
dropping south from Canada. Otherwise no significant changes
other than populating latest sensible weather elements and
blending to mid-morning values.


.SHORT TERM...(Today and tonight)
Issued at 233 AM CST Sun Feb 25 2018

Blowing and drifting snow and Aviation concerns highlight the
short term forecast this morning.

Currently, low pressure was situated from Wisconsin northwest into
northern Minnesota and easter North Dakota. Aloft a broad
northwest flow was situated from the Canadian Rockies southeast
into the Great lakes region. A shortwave trough was propagating
southeast through western ND, within this upper level flow.
Stratus was located ahead of the wave from southwest into eastern
ND with scattered flurries moving through central ND. Partial
clearing was occurring over the northwest, with another area of
stratus over southeast Saskatchewan, poised to skirt the northern
tier counties. Needless to say, a busy aviation forecast, and
also headaches with temperatures as temperatures rise and fall
with as clouds move into/out out of the area. Expect clouds and
flurries to linger through the early morning, but overall, expect
a decrease in clouds from west to east, mid morning through the

Gradient winds are not overly impressive but we do see 0.5km winds
of 20 to 35 kts in the east this morning and moving into the west
this afternoon. Some areas, especially the James River Valley
have seen a good amount of snow the past few days. Even areas like
Bismarck which hasn`t seen much, has a little light snow
available to blow around. We think there is a possibility of
drifting snow today, across roads today and road surface
temperatures this afternoon are expected to climb into the 40s,
even though actual air temperatures remain in the mid 20s and
lower 30s. Thus we could see some slippery road conditions,
especially in areas that have seen more snow over the past few
days. We did bump up winds over guidance today to get a mention of
blowing and drifting snow, mainly over eastern portions of
central ND, and the far southwest.

Otherwise, quiet in the short term period with temperatures
dropping into the teens tonight with clear to partly cloudy skies.

.LONG TERM...(Monday through Saturday)
Issued at 233 AM CST Sun Feb 25 2018

Quiet and seasonable conditions are expected through the work
week. Monday does not appear as windy as it did yesterday, but
think we may still see some breezy conditions with steep lapse
rates and 0.5k winds around 30 knots Monday afternoon as we
reside within the warm sector of a surface low pressure system
that tracks across southern Canada. With temperatures warming
above freezing over many areas we could see another day with any
drifting snow sticking to roads and re-freezing.

Otherwise very quiet Tuesday through Thursday. Deterministic
models are similar in bringing an upper low from the eastern
Pacific into the northern Rockies over the weekend but at this
time there are significant model differences in how this
eventually pans out as we move through next weekend. It certainly
looks like this will be an active timeframe over the northern and
central plains. Stay tuned.


.AVIATION...(For the 12Z TAFS through 12Z Monday morning)
Issued at 630 AM CST Sun Feb 25 2018

Widespread stratus is dropping south from Saskatchewan and
Manitoba into western and central ND. This is behind the area of
stratus that will be exiting the JMS area shortly. Neither have
been handled well by forecast models. NAM does show an area of
higher 850 mb spreading southeast this morning and will utilize
this as a guide. Kept MVFR ceilings at KISN for a brief period
this morning as they are on the western fringe of the stratus
layer. Spread MVFR stratus into KMOT 13-17 UTC. First area of
stratus exits KJMS by 15 UTC. For now have kept the second area of
stratus out of KBIS and KJMS but day shift will need to monitor.
Moderate westerly flow today diminishing and shifting southwest
this evening.




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