Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Grand Junction, CO

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FXUS65 KGJT 161052

Area Forecast Discussion
National Weather Service Grand Junction CO
352 AM MST Thu Feb 16 2017

.SHORT TERM...(Today through Friday)
Issued at 352 AM MST Thu Feb 16 2017

The ridge of high pressure which settled over the region earlier
this week will be driven east of the forecast area today as a
shortwave trough sweeps across the Great Basin. This will have
little noticeable effect on conditions across the region which
will remain mild and sunny for most locations. However, a strong
inversion over the Gunnison valley is expected to prevent
temperatures from reaching freezing again this afternoon.

The shortwave will just brush northeast Utah during the night
bringing a chance for snow showers over the eastern Uinta`s and
just clouds elsewhere. It should be mentioned that there is a
small chance that showers could develop over southeast Utah. This
activity fueled a by a stream of moisture extending westward to
the base of deep trough of low pressure over the eastern Pacific.
The arrival of clouds tonight should cause lows to moderate,
especially over eastern Utah and the westernmost counties of

On Friday, the trough over the eastern Pacific will dig to the
southeast causing the moisture stream discussed above to lift over
the area as a weak warm front. This will bring a chance of showers
to southeast Utah and southwest Colorado during the afternoon with
only slight chances to the north and east. Owing to the warmth of
this system, models suggest mixed precipitation will begin from
8500 to 9000 feet with all snow above 10000 feet MSL producing
light accumulations. Increased clouds are expected to subdue
temperatures by a few degrees, but afternoon highs will still be
well above normal for this time of year.

.LONG TERM...(Friday night through Wednesday)
Issued at 352 AM MST Thu Feb 16 2017

The shortwave disturbance mentioned above will precede an
unsettled period through the weekend due initially to a moist
southwest flow ahead of an upper low that is expected to drift
just south of our CWA by Sunday. Cooler temperatures can be
expected, except in the valleys with the strong inversions where
temperatures should moderate a little. H7 temperatures only range
from 0C to 3C through the weekend, and snow levels should be
elevated above most valley zones. Expect storm total snowfall in
the mountains within the 3-8 inch range above 8000 feet, with the
western San Juan Mountains likely to receive the most of any of
our mountain areas, with up to about 10 inches possible on
Highway 550 above the 10,000 foot level.

A migratory upper ridge can be expected on Monday with drier air
and some airmass warming. This will precede a WSW flow aloft
Monday night through Wednesday with some mid level moisture
embedded in the flow likely moving across our area at times, and
above normal temperatures in most of our CWA. could be a few
showers at times mainly over the mountains, though QPF should be
minimal from any showers.

Then the models are indicating the next round of unsettled weather
with significant widespread precipitation will begin Wednesday
night, though that is presently just barely beyond the current
forecast package temporal limits. Anyway, it looks hopeful for more
precipitation on the horizon later next week for our region,
assuming that the models have a good handle on the situation.


.AVIATION...(For the 12Z TAFS through 12Z Friday morning)
Issued at 352 AM MST Thu Feb 16 2017

Expect VFR conditions and CIGS above ILS breakpoints at all TAF
sites across eastern Utah and western Colorado to continue through
the next 24 hours. Winds will remain light and terrain driven
through the period.






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