Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Albuquerque, NM

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FXUS65 KABQ 241750 AAA
AFDABQ

Area Forecast Discussion...UPDATED
National Weather Service Albuquerque NM
1050 AM MST Sat Feb 24 2018

.AVIATION...
18Z TAF CYCLE
Strong west to northwest winds will continue through late afternoon
along and east of the central mt chain with gusts around 40-50kts.
Moderate west to northwest winds expected elsewhere until
approximately 22Z. Another upper- level trough will slide
southeastward through northern NM late tonight and Sunday. Sct -SHSN
along with MFVR cigs and vsbys will favor far nw and north-central NM
including KFMN btwn 10Z-18Z. Strong west winds aloft will continue
areawide overnight, increasing and becoming nwly at the surface
during the late morning Sunday.

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&&

.PREV DISCUSSION...313 AM MST Sat Feb 24 2018...
.SYNOPSIS...
As the freezing fog diminishes across northeast New Mexico this
morning, the snow will taper off elsewhere. Critical fire weather
conditions will return to the plains as wind increase and low
humidities persist. Meanwhile, all areas will see much cooler
temperatures today thanks to a Pacific cold front. Another trough
will slide over northern New Mexico on Sunday, which may bring some
light snow to the northern New Mexico mountains. Warmer temperatures
are in store for Monday and Tuesday, though winds will pick up again
by Tuesday. More precipitation could be on the way for Wednesday.

&&

.DISCUSSION...
Moist, southeasterly low level flow across Union County resulted in
freezing fog early this morning with some minimal ice accretion
likely. Surface winds are waffling now, and visibilities are slowing
improving. Strong westerly winds will develop shortly after sunrise,
which will quickly mix out the remaining low clouds and fog.

Speaking of wind, 700mb winds of 50 to 60kts should be peaking over
the south central mountains around the time of this writing, though
they will remain quite strong for the remainder of the day. Will keep
High Wind Warnings in place, and add a few zones into the Wind
Advisory. Blowing dust will be possible across portions of the
plains. The surface gradient will be quite strong behind a Pacific
cold front that is charging from west to east this morning. The front
has already advanced to approximately KAXX southward to KCQC.
Temperatures will be several degrees colder than yesterday, but
across the plains, temperatures will be tricky as cold air advection
battles with compressional warming.

A band of snow also developed this morning along the Pacific front,
likely dropping an inch or two across northern and western NM. Snow
is already waning this morning, and will continue to do so. Thus, the
WSW will likely expire on time.

Another weak trough will shift across northern NM early Sunday. The
high peaks of the northern mountains could get an inch or two of
snow, but more wind will be in store for the remainder of the area,
especially the east.

Warmer temperatures will return for Monday as the upper level flow
becomes southwesterly. On Tuesday, all eyes will be on a closed low
scooting southeastward along the Cali coast. Ahead of the low,
southwesterly winds will increase over NM, keeping temperatures near
or above normal for Tuesday. Tuesday night and into Wednesday, models
diverge on the progression of the upper low. The GFS weakens the low
into a trough and quickly slides the trough eastward across NM on
Wednesday. In this scenario, most of the precip would be across
western and northern NM and all areas would see strong winds.
However, the latest ECMWF keeps the low closed as it shifts eastward
over the southern NM border. This scenario would keep much of the
precip chances south of I-40 and bring less wind to all areas. This
is a large deviation from previous ECMWF runs, so not quite ready to
bite on it yet.

Much of Thursday and Friday should be quiet, then models are
suggesting another system will slide eastward north of NM, perhaps
bringing the Land of Enchantment more wind.

34

&&

.FIRE WEATHER...
...STRONG WINDS AND LOW RELATIVE HUMIDITY ACROSS MUCH OF THE EASTERN
PLAINS TODAY...AS WELL AS EARLY NEXT WEEK...

An upper disturbance swinging over northern and central New Mexico
today will allow for strong winds over portions of the central and
east. Minimum humidities less than 15 percent will dominate the
Northeast and East Central Plains as well as portions of the
Northeast Highlands. Forecast Haines over mainly the East Central
Plains has increased to moderate to high for this afternoon, despite
below average high temperatures. LIS imagery indicates continued
very dry surface to near surface conditions. The East Central Plains
is most focused area for the wind, low humidities and dryness, as
well as the higher Haines, so went ahead with a red flag warning for
late this morning through this afternoon.

Tonight and Sunday morning will see more snow showers over the
northern mountains thanks to another fast moving disturbance.
Continued windy conditions will be focused along and south of
Interstate 40 on Sunday. Highs Sunday will be about 5 to 15 degrees
below average.

Dry and warmer Monday and Tuesday with breezy to windy conditions.
The stronger winds look to be on Tuesday, but minimum humidities
both days will range from about 7 to 12 percent over the Northeast
and East Central Plains. Above average high temperatures will be
combined with moderate to high Haines each day so that critical fire
weather conditions appear to be most likely over the Northeast
Plains on Monday and from the Central Highlands across the Northeast
Plains on Tuesday.

Another disturbance could bring additional precipitation to parts of
New Mexico around the middle of next week along with about 5 to 10
degrees of cooling. However, forecast models disagree whether the
north or locales south of Interstate 40 will be favored for
precipitation.

Vent rates will be good to excellent for the majority of the region
today through next Wednesday before decreasing somewhat next
Thursday in the wake of the mid week disturbance.

&&

.ABQ WATCHES/WARNINGS/ADVISORIES...
Red Flag Warning until 6 PM MST this evening for the following
zones... NMZ108.

Wind Advisory until 4 PM MST this afternoon for the following
zones... NMZ529-532>540.

High Wind Warning until 4 PM MST this afternoon for the following
zones... NMZ523-526.

&&

$$

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