Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Hastings, NE

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FXUS63 KGID 291725
AFDGID

Area Forecast Discussion
National Weather Service Hastings NE
1225 PM CDT THU SEP 29 2016

.UPDATE...
Issued at 531 AM CDT Thu Sep 29 2016

As suspected as a possibility in the original discussion a few
hours ago, low temps this morning have in fact continued dropping
ever-more-so below expectations of 12+ hours ago thanks to nearly
ideal radiational cooling conditions, and it now appears most of
the CWA will notch official lows in the 38-41 range, with
typically-favored colder spots such as Ord having already dropped
to 34! Grand Island has dropped to 39, marking its first low in
the 30s since May 15th (38). Technically, suppose it`s possible
that some patchy frost could be forming in low-lying areas mainly
in counties northwest of the Tri-Cities, but it`s just "too
little, too late" for any kind of marginal Frost Advisory, and
again, the vast majority of the CWA will remain just above frost-
worthy levels. On a related note, despite the fairly impressive
cool-down, dewpoints have also been dropping in tandem, and any
kind of truly noticeable fog formation is looking less and less
likely.

&&

.SHORT TERM...(Today and tonight)
Issued at 247 AM CDT Thu Sep 29 2016

General overview/highlights of these next 24 hours:
At least in theory/"on paper", this is probably the
quietest/"easiest" short term forecast this forecaster has
encountered in several months. However, will openly admit that
these seemingly easy/straightforward forecasts always make this
particular forecaster wonder if he might be missing something
lurking in the details. In this case, "if" (key word IF) there is
a catch/caveat, it might end up involving a bit more in the way
of at least light fog development than currently expected, but at
least for now the official forecast holds off on any formal fog
mention (more on this below). Otherwise, confidence remains very
high in literally zero chance of rain (guaranteed dry), along
with what many folks likely consider extremely pleasant/slightly
coolish early fall weather with both high/low temps averaging
slightly below normal for the date.

A look at the current scene around 2 AM/07z:
It just doesn`t get much quieter. Satellite imagery confirms
crystal clear skies over the CWA. Water vapor satellite and short
term model data reveal a highly-amplified, blocky pattern over the
CONUS, featuring a quasi-stationary and deep, nearly cut-off low
dominating the eastern states and centered over the IN/KY border
area. Meanwhile, off to our west, a broad trough is noted over the
western CONUS with a stronger, more organized low gradually
approaching the Pacific Northwest, with the main belt of northerly
jet snaking from this region then east-northeastward across
Canada. That leaves our local Central Plains region literally "in
the middle" under a fairly pronounced ridge dominating the
central states from south-to-north. At the surface, the weak cold
front that passed through yesterday has reached north TX, while
our local conditions are largely controlled by the south-southwest
reach of a roughly 1030 millibar high centered over the northern
MN/Canada border area. With our CWA almost directly within this
ridge axis, breezes are averaging from near-calm to very light
northerly/easterly.

Now looking ahead in more detail through these next 24 hours...

Early this morning (through around sunrise/slightly after):
At least per the official forecast, what you see now is pretty
much what you get, with continued clear skies and near-calm to
very light northerly/easterly breezes. This is a very favorable
radiational cooling situation, and although forecasted low temps
were nudged down 1-2 degrees earlier tonight with most of the CWA
expected to bottom out somewhere 39-43, it`s sure possible that a
few spots could still drop slightly below this range, but still
"safe" from values supportive of widespread frost formation. One
possible "catch" to early this morning is the possibility of at
least light, patchy, mainly ground fog forming/persisting a few
hours either side of sunrise. However, with most models/guidance
insisting that widespread visibility reductions below 5 miles are
unlikely, have maintained a fog-free forecast for now, but will be
closely monitoring obs as sunrise approaches just in case
something a bit more noticeable might form.

Daytime hours today:
For lovers of slightly below normal early fall temps along with
lighter breezes than yesterday, it probably doesn`t get much
better than this. In the mid-upper levels, all of the main
features mentioned above remain rather persistent through the day,
with a north-south ridge axis remaining firm over the central
CONUS while the center of the low to the east meanders around over
the KY area. At the surface, the heart of the ridge axis extending
southward from the western Great Lakes edges only slightly
eastward during the day. For our CWA, this means that very
light/somewhat variable breezes this morning will gradually become
a bit more established from an easterly direction this afternoon,
but even then with sustained speeds only 5-12 MPH in most areas,
and perhaps some gusts as high as 15 MPH mainly in far western
counties (such as Dawson) by mid-late afternoon. Sky-cover wise,
kept the official forecast heavily-geared toward sunny, but there
are hints of perhaps some scattered fair weather stratocumulus
forming mainly in the eastern half of the CWA, which bears
watching in case current sky cover percentages might need
increased somewhat. Temp-wise, changed highs very little from
previous forecast, but if anything nudged up some areas 1-2
degrees based on readings the last few days slightly exceeding
expectations. As a result, have most areas aimed into very
uniform highs 68-70.

This evening/tonight:
Again guaranteed dry with the main issues consisting of: 1) how
cool will lows drop? and 2) could at least patchy fog develop
here or there, with at least one model (00z NAM) suggesting that a
bit more widespread fog could develop mainly eastern half of the
CWA? In the mid-upper levels, again very little change from the
daytime hours, although the upper trough nearing the Pacific
Northwest edges just a touch eastward, which starts to break
down/weaken the central CONUS ridge a touch, while the eastern low
just keeps on wobbling over KY and vicinity. At the surface, broad
ridging extending into our area from the northeast remains the
dominant influence, and in fact the pressure fields/orientation
remain very persistent through the night. As a result, another
night of light breezes generally at/below 5 MPH is anticipated,
mainly from an east-southeast direction. Although maybe not quite
as "ideal" of a cooling night as the ongoing one, it`s still
pretty good and as long as skies remain clear/mostly clear as
expected, this has the looks of another night that could drop a
bit colder-than-advertised. Compared to previous forecast, nudged
down lows 1-2 degrees and perhaps not quite enough, but will aim
most of the CWA 40-44 with any upper 30s most favored in typically
colder spots such as Ord. As for fog potential, pondered
introducing a generic "patchy fog" mention to much of the CWA for
the late night hours, but with SREF "probabilities for visibility
below 3 miles" still averaging rather low (despite the more
aggressive 00z NAM), held off for now and will let upcoming
day/evening shifts take another look for possible formal
inclusion. Besides, confidence in possible fog formation Thursday
night hinges somewhat on whether or not any manages to form yet
this morning in fairly similar conditions.

.LONG TERM...(Friday daytime through Wednesday)
Issued at 332 AM CDT Thu Sep 29 2016

Not sure what to say about Friday other than its going to be about
as nice a day as we get in these parts. Cool but seasonal start
followed by a quick warm-up to the lower and middle 70s by mid
afternoon under mainly sunny skies. Top it off with light and
variable winds gradually turning to the east/southeast by evening
and chalk it up as one heck of a nice day.

Though remaining mild and seasonally on the warm side over the
weekend into Monday, there are changes in store. Upper level
shortwave ridging slides east through the period and the area
will see a good increase in southerly winds late Sunday and
Monday. As the wind increases, so will the low level moisture as
dewpoints increase to the 50s by Sunday afternoon. With the
increasing moisture and some warm advection, an overnight shower
or isolated storm is possible Saturday night. Very sparse and
little more than trace amounts of rain expected.

A significant change is in store Tuesday and Wednesday of next
week as a deep trough moves through the central/northern Rockies.
Little leery on moving things in to the area too quickly as the
pattern is a fairly meridional but it is a strong system. The end
game for south central Nebraska/north central Kansas is increasing
rain chances the middle of next week...and the potential for some
decent rainfall if things comes together. Early look at
precipitable water values suggest they are very high for early
October, essentially pushing the 90th percentile. The strong south
to north fetch could lead to some 1" to 2" rainfall potential if
things it all comes together. None-the-less...its going to be
cooling down mid next week with the trough and associated front
moving through the area.

&&

.AVIATION...(For the 18Z KGRI/KEAR TAFS through 18Z Friday afternoon)
Issued at 1225 PM CDT Thu Sep 29 2016

VFR conditions will prevail. Surface high pressure will dominate
the forecast. Winds will be light and variable or light with a
slight southeasterly direction. There are some low CU across
eastern areas of Nebraska around 3000ft, but these are not
anticipated to impact the terminals beyond a scattered deck.

&&

.GID Watches/Warnings/Advisories...
NE...None.
KS...None.
&&

$$

UPDATE...Pfannkuch
SHORT TERM...Pfannkuch
LONG TERM...Moritz
AVIATION...Billings Wright


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