Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Fairbanks, AK

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FXAK69 PAFG 112316

Northern Alaska Forecast Discussion
National Weather Service Fairbanks AK
216 PM AKST Mon Dec 11 2017

Active, southerly flow pattern continue across Northern Alaska
with a wide range of winter and strong wind hazards. Unseasonably
warm temperature both at the surface and aloft persist over the
southern half of our forecast area, which will present some
interesting forecasting challenges in terms precipitation type
through the week. The 11/12Z deterministic models are in good
agreement regarding the overall synoptic pattern through the
forecast period. There are some differences in how each individual
shortwave in the southerly flow is handled. Models are hinting at
temperatures warming aloft Wednesday over the western and central
Interior, with the AKGFS being a bit bullish and unrealistic at
+4 to +7C on 00Z this weekend into early next week, but may be
short lived.

West Coast and Western Interior...Along the west coast, low
visibility between one-quarter to one mile due to snow and
blowing snow have been reported at sites in zones 207 and 213.
Conditions will improve overnight for Saint Lawrence Island and
the Bering Strait as north winds decrease, while strong winds
continue for Point Hope through tomorrow. For zones 215, southern
216, and 227, NAM and GFS soundings continue to indicate that the
precipitation type will be freezing rain as warm air remains aloft
over the next several days. The best chance for freezing rain
will be this evening into early tomorrow morning, where up to one-
tenth of an inch is expected and winter weather advisories for
freezing rain remain in effect. To the north of the Kobuk and
Noatak valley, snow will continue overnight tonight and dissipate
tomorrow. A storm total of 8 to 12 inches is expected in zone 217,
and 3 to 6 inches with blowing snow for zone 208.

Eastern and Central Interior...Strong south
winds have topped out around 80 mph as reported by observation
sites within and near Isabel Pass with gusts around 75 mph
reported recently at a mesonet site near Fort Greely and an
estimated report of 65 to 70 mph from a spotter east of Tok in
zone 224. It looks like winds have peaked in Isabel Pass as the
strongest winds are now being reported in zone 223 south of Delta
Junction. South winds should gradually decrease over the next few
hours. For zone 225, strong, warning level southerly winds never
developed and have been between 45 to 55 mph and peaked early this
morning near 65 mph. Models are hinting at another round gusty
south winds late Tuesday afternoon into Tuesday night, but this
round should be considerably weaker than the current event. Over
the northern Interior, winter storm warnings for heavy snow
remains in effect for zones 218 and 219. Snow will continue
through the evening for these zones and then taper off tonight.
Over the southern Interior, NAM and GFS soundings show a favorable
atmospheric profile for freezing rain for any precipitation that
falls through this evening before temperatures cool aloft.

Brooks Range and North Slope...Along the Arctic Coast, visibility
has been reduced to one-quarter to one-half mile at times in
blowing snow. Expecting conditions to persist as east winds
gusting to 40 mph continue tonight for the Beaufort Sea Coast and
Tuesday from Barrow west. Will likely see another 2 to 4 inches
with lesser amounts inland and to the east of Barrow by Tuesday
afternoon. A leeside trough north of the Brooks Range will develop
Wednesday with the pressure gradient over the Brooks Range
increasing. Southerly gap winds through the eastern Brooks Range
passes will increase Wednesday evening and persist into early
Thursday afternoon. Gale force winds will develop along the Arctic
Coast Wednesday evening into thursday. This will potentially lead
to issues with reduced visibility due to blowing snow along the
Arctic Coast and in the eastern Brooks Range passes.

Coastal Hazard Potential Days 3 and 4...None.


High Wind Warning for AKZ223-AKZ224-AKZ226.

Winter Storm Warning for AKZ201-AKZ213-AKZ217-AKZ218-AKZ219.

Winter Weather Advisory for AKZ202-AKZ203-AKZ204-AKZ207-AKZ208-

Heavy Freezing Spray Warning for PKZ210-PKZ220.

Gale Warning for PKZ210-PKZ220-PKZ225-PKZ230.

Brisk Wind Advisory for PKZ235-PKZ240-PKZ245.


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