Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Elko, NV
FXUS65 KLKN 072239
Area Forecast Discussion
National Weather Service Elko NV
239 PM PST Wed Dec 7 2016
.SYNOPSIS...A persistent flow of Pacific moisture into the Great
Basin region will help create an active weather pattern for the
next few days across the northern half of Nevada. Snow will begin
tonight across Humboldt county spreading farther east Thursday.
A brief period of freezing rain is possible Thursday afternoon
across some valleys before changing to all rain Thursday night as
warmer temperatures move into the state. Snowfall accumulations in
mountains of Elko county could see a foot or more of snow by
.SHORT TERM...Tonight through Friday. A very active weather
pattern is expected over the next few days. Water vapor imagery
shows an evident plume of mid to upper-level Pacific moisture is
directed towards the state. Snow will commence this evening
across the western parts of the CWA and overspread northeastern
Nevada tonight into Thursday morning. High pressure across the
northern Rockies will shift east tonight allowing for low-level
WAA to set up across NV late tonight and certainly on Thursday.
Valley snow will steadily change to rain throughout the day on
Thursday from west to east.
The possibility of a short freezing rain event still exists
across some valleys in central Nevada. Forecast soundings show a
steady layer warming just above the sfc across parts of
northwestern, central and east central Nevada. Forecast confidence
in this scenario remains low but weak signal has persisted
through the past few model runs although starting of event has
been shifted forward to late Thursday morning, ending Thursday
evening in which all valley precip will be rain or wintry mix.
Models show the continued higher Theta-E return Thursday night
and Friday and will raise snow levels considerably during this
time. Generally 1 to 3 inches of snow is expected in valleys
through Friday. However, event will become focused on higher
elevations and mountains where up to 7 inches of snow is possible
in the Rubies.
Winter weather advisories were issued for all but northern Nye
county. Event should taper off Thursday night. However, light
precipitation is expected to continue through FRiday morning.
Another, more robust winter system is expected to impact northern
Nevada Friday afternoon bringing even more valley rain and
higher elevation snows. Mountain snow accumulations could reach
winter storm watch criteria for this next system with the Rubies
expected to receive about a foot of snow.
.LONG TERM...Friday night through Wednesday. Warmer westerly flow
aloft Friday evening into Friday night with most valley areas
seeing snow levels rising up above valley floors. Valley areas may
see 1-2 tenth of an inch of rain Friday night. A bigger concern
will be areas of northeastern Nevada (mainly Elko County) above
6500 feet in elevation where precipitation is expected to remain
snow. These areas may see an additional 2-5 inches of snow
Saturday morning as the flow aloft veers to a more northwesterly
direction cooler air will once again move in over the Great Basin,
with snow levels lowering back to valley floors. Significant QPF
differences between the GFS and ECMWF models Saturday into
Sunday, and as such quite a bit of uncertainty in the snow amounts
for the weekend. Best chances for moderate snow would be over and
near Elko County on Saturday as the ECMWF places 1-3 inches of
snow into valley locations through Saturday evening. At the same
time the GFS model has only trace amounts up to a half inch of
snow to valley locations from 10am Saturday morning through 10pm
Saturday evening. The GFS model does show another round of
moisture pushing in from the west on Sunday, while the ECMWF has
dry conditions Sunday.
More uncertainty between the models Sunday through Monday, however
the models do come into better alignment Monday night into Tuesday
with moderate precipitation north of Interstate 80. Models are in
agreement on snow levels Monday night into Tuesday keeping snow
up above valley floors, with the possible exception of Northern
.AVIATION...Snow showers will spread in from the west later this
evening and expand eastward toward KELY after midnight. KWMC and
KEKO should see between a half inch and an inch and a half of snow
by 18Z Thursday when snow changes over to either rain, or a rain
snow mix. There is a slight chance that precipitation will briefly
change to freezing rain late Thursday morning or early afternoon
before the change over to rain. Precipitation at KELY should be
all snow on Thursday. No precipitation is expected at KTPH in the
next 24 hours.
Winter Weather Advisory from 4 AM to 10 PM PST Thursday for
Northern Elko County-Ruby Mountains/East Humboldt Range-South
Central Elko County-Southeastern Elko County-White Pine County.
Winter Weather Advisory from 10 PM this evening to 10 PM PST
Thursday for Humboldt County-Northern Lander County and Northern
Eureka County-Southern Lander County and Southern Eureka County-
Southwestern Elko County.