Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Gaylord, MI

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FXUS63 KAPX 190354

Area Forecast Discussion
National Weather Service Gaylord MI
1154 PM EDT Sat Mar 18 2017

Issued at 946 PM EDT Sat Mar 18 2017

Low level moisture remains abundant across the area, producing
more widespread low clouds and some patches of drizzle and
flurries. For the most part where drizzle has been observed,
temperatures have remained just above freezing. Cannot completely
rule out some icy patches on secondary and untreated road
surfaces, so definitely use some caution when traveling tonight.

Overall trends support moisture slowly thinning from the
top-down, but the near surface environment essentially remains
saturated through tonight into early Sunday morning. May see
moisture thin just enough to allow some patchy clearing, although
any clear areas will likely fog over. Thinning of moisture should
put an end to any drizzle/flurries heading through the overnight.
Temperatures will be slow to fall with all the clouds around,
only dropping just a few more degrees by morning.


.NEAR TERM...(Tonight through Sunday)
Issued at 345 PM EDT Sat Mar 18 2017

...Drying out tonight and warming up Sunday...

High Impact Weather Potential...Minimal.

Pattern Synopsis/Forecast...Deep shortwave trough and its attendant
closed low will continue to push east tonight with H5 heights
increasing rapidly overnight. Inverted surface trough axis
stretching from Saginaw Bay to Newberry this afternoon will weaken
this evening as high pressure builds upstream. This surface high and
positively tilted upper level ridge axis will slide across northern
Michigan on Sunday, allowing for a dry respite as well as a milder
start to the week.

Primary Forecast Concerns...Areas of drizzle and some flurries will
continue through the remainder of the afternoon, especially over the
higher terrain. This activity is expected to taper off later this
evening as the surface trough breaks down. If it lingers long enough
into the evening as temperatures drop, a brief period of isolated
freezing drizzle wouldn`t be out of the question , but the
likelihood is low. The low stratus has kept temperatures locked in
the mid 30s today, setting us up for a colder night ahead with lows
in the mid to upper 20s. The other main forecast question is whether
fog will be an issue again tonight. Forecast soundings show low
level moisture being stripped out from top down tonight, with only
the lowest 1km still close to saturation. Winds will certainly be
light enough to allow for fog, and clouds are expected to gradually
diminish. There looks to be enough agreement between hi-res models
and SREF/NCAR ensemble members to warrant putting in areas of fog
overnight, particularly over eastern Upper and the Tip of the Mitt.
Under partly sunny skies and southerly winds on Sunday, high
temperatures will range from the upper 30s to mid 40s.


.SHORT TERM...(Sunday night through Tuesday)
Issued at 345 PM EDT Sat Mar 18 2017

High Impact Weather Potential: Doesn`t appear to be anything major
for the first part of the week.

Pattern Forecast: Height rises associated with short wave ridging
spanning the Rocky Mountains this afternoon will build into the
Great Lakes/Ohio Valley Sunday along with a surface ridge axis.
Short wave troughing moving in off the Pacific will track northeast
with most of the dynamics north of the border and just some glancing
height falls into Michigan Monday.  These height falls in turn will
push a weakening cold front across the lower Peninsula Monday...with
a secondary backdoor front bringing a more substantial push of
colder air Tuesday.

Primary Forecast Concerns: Narrow band of moisture advecting
northward ahead of the initial cold front will push a band of
precipitation across the forecast area Sunday night and at least
into the first part of Monday (with some downstate convection
possible).  Precipitation may start as snow or a mix of rain and
snow before changing to more liquid (possibly some freezing
precipitation with surface temperatures expected to near freezing
Sunday night).  As cold front moves through the forecast area Monday
afternoon precipitation is expected to end with clouds decreasing.

Secondary push of colder air presses south across Lake Superior/
upper Michigan early Tuesday...which will induce some clouds and
light snow showers/flurries into the U.P. Tuesday morning.

.LONG TERM...(Tuesday night through Saturday)
Issued at 345 PM EDT Sat Mar 18 2017

High Impact Weather Potential...Some Potential late in the period
for a wintry mix.

Upper levels show a very active period across the Great Lakes into
the upcoming weekend. A sharp 500mb trough will dig into the Great
Lakes Wednesday with upper ridging then building over the region
through Friday, before a weak upper trough redevelops over the state
for the weekend. 850mb temps in this pattern warm from -18c mid week
to around +4c Friday and into the weekend. This pattern will
generate below normal temps in the lower 30s Wednesday, with above
normal readings in the 50s by Saturday. The only pcpn expected
through Thursday, will be lingering northernly flow lake effects
over the wrn lakes Wednesday as a deep upper trough exits east.
However the chance for mixed pcpn increases across the region Friday
and Saturday, the result of a central Plains storm system lifting
into the Ohio Valley.


.AVIATION...(For the 06Z TAFS through 06Z Sunday night)
Issued at 1152 PM EDT Sat Mar 18 2017

Simple persistence will do, with widespread IFR conditions
expected to continue with low cigs and reduced vis in fog/mist.
Slow improvement expected later Sunday morning, and especially
during the afternoon hours, as cigs rise and vis restrictions are
lost. Light winds expected through the period.


Issued at 345 PM EDT Sat Mar 18 2017

Winds will become light and variable tonight heading into Sunday as
high pressure drifts overhead. Southerly winds will pick up Sunday
evening ahead of the next system, perhaps with isolated gusts to 25
knots over some Lake Michigan nearshore waters.




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