Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Gaylord, MI

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FXUS63 KAPX 150830

Area Forecast Discussion
National Weather Service Gaylord MI
330 AM EST Thu Feb 15 2018

.NEAR TERM...(Today through Tonight)
Issued at 331 AM EST Thu Feb 15 2018

...Cold air returns tonight...

High impact weather potential: outside chance for some freezing
drizzle in eastern upper MI today.

998mb surface low is crossing s central Superior early this morning.
An initial, weak cold front is advancing east into central upper
MI and eastern WI. A sharper secondary cold front extends across
central MN and ne SD. Stratus now covers most of northern MI. Some
light advection fog as well (vsbys generally at or above 2SM), as
surface dew points in the 30s make inroads over extensive snow
cover. Temp and precip trends are the main concerns.

Surface low will move east of Superior this morning, and will
already reach Quebec by early afternoon. Initial cold front will
cross northern MI this morning, with the secondary front arriving
this afternoon. There is presently very little cloud cover behind
the initial front. It is interesting to see guidance produce very
little in the way of clearing, keeping stratus trapped below the
persistent 2.5k ft inversion. Am going to cautiously keep this
morning on the cloudy side, but might need an itchy trigger finger
to make adjustments. No real signs of drizzle out there on radar
(will be hard to tell in surface obs given the general light fog).
Might still keep a mention for part of today, including fzdz north
of the bridge, but will remove any mention from the HWO.

This afternoon, a weak wave spins up along the initial front, along
the MI/OH border. Most of the precip will be well downstate, but a
few showers could work into southern portions of the forecast area.
Cold air will not have gotten that far south yet, and this will be
just rain if we see anything. Meanwhile, 850mb temps will be
dropping to around -8C in eastern upper MI by late in the day. And,
a couple of weak but fast-moving shortwave will be zipping across
Superior and environs. Any lingering drizzle/fzdz will eventually
morph to spotty light snow late in the day, though with no accums of

Max temps mid 30s to lower 40s.

Nnw post-frontal winds will lower 850mb temps to -10C (near Saginaw
Bay) to -20C (eastern upper MI) by morning. There`s also still a
passing wave or two (and the associated moisture) to help lake
effect along, as least into the early overnight hours. (More
substantial drying arrives late in the overnight). But we maintain a
very shallow inversion, just 2-3k ft. That will drastically limit
vertical motions in lake-generated cloud cover, and correspondingly
lake effect snow. Sct to numerous snow showers will still develop,
especially in far western Chip/Mack Cos (accums around an inch) and
the Gd Trav Bay region (less than an inch). But intensity and accums
will be limited.

Min temps in the teens in northern lower MI, 5 to 10 above zero in
eastern upper.


.SHORT TERM...(Friday through Saturday)
Issued at 331 AM EST Thu Feb 15 2018

...Colder Friday then Moderating Temperatures Saturday...

Primary Forecast Concern...Chances for snow showers.

Winds back from northwesterly to westerly Friday through the day. In
addition, moisture wanes as we get into ridging at the surface and
aloft. Despite this it`s cold enough for lake processes to continue
to produce some lake response. Not expecting a whole lot of snow
accumulation though. As the ridge shifts off to the east, over lake
instability decreases so activity should shut off Friday night. A
short wave moving through the flow Saturday should increase moisture
and over lake instability restarting lake effect. Could even see an
inch or two of accumulation if things come together right. Highs
Friday in the upper teens to middle 20s. Lows Friday night mainly in
the single digits above zero. Highs Saturday in the milder upper 20s
to lower 30s.


.LONG TERM...(Saturday night through Wednesday)
Issued at 331 AM EST Thu Feb 15 2018

...Oh No, Here Comes More Warm Air...

It`s a real shame for winter enthusiasts that our snowpack which
took a hit yesterday (and will again today) looks like it`s going to
really be impacted negatively early next week. This is because
extended models continue to agree that warm air will surge northward
into much if not all of northern Michigan Monday into Tuesday
(eastern upper may try to stay in cooler air) as a trough digs into
the intermountain west. In addition, low pressure crossing the
region will likely bring mainly rain (perhaps some snow eastern
upper) which would only exasperate matters. Still hoping for a full
pattern change with troughing across the Great Lakes to take shape
in March, though in reality trying to rebuild the snow pack in March
is usually a daunting task. In the meantime...northwest flow lake
effect snow showers likely to develop Saturday night and linger into
Sunday (though moisture wanes). Increasing chances for warm
advection driven light snow Sunday night before the likely
changeover to rain across northern lower Monday morning.


.AVIATION...(For the 06Z TAFS through 06Z Thursday night)
Issued at 1158 PM EST Wed Feb 14 2018

Low level moisture continues to increase, via strengthening SW
low level winds, which will bring LLWS to all airports tonight.
IFR/MVFR CIGS and reduced VSBYS due to fog continue to spread
north, now through TVC/MBL, which will expand/develop into PLN/APN
overnight. Doubt drizzle/freezing drizzle is possible due to how
shallow the moisture is. Still not sure if low clouds scatter out
at times Thursday, but VSBYS expected to improve through the day.
A cold front arrives Thursday afternoon into Thursday evening,
turning winds more west, then NW.




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