Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Albuquerque, NM
FXUS65 KABQ 212357 AAA
Area Forecast Discussion...UPDATED
National Weather Service Albuquerque NM
457 PM MST Sat Jan 21 2017
00Z TAF CYCLE
W/NW winds and SHSN will diminish thru 06Z at all terminals. The
focus for high winds will shift to the east slopes of the central
mt chain where gusts to 60kt are likely overnight. KLVS may see
erratic gusts with mountain wave activity in the area. FG and low
cigs near 010 are most likely for KGUP and KFMN but confidence
remains low depending on how much winds taper and whether initial
clearing develops. Sunday will be a more tranquil day with VFR all
areas and lighter winds at terminal sites. Winds will still be
strong along the east slopes thru at least late morning.
.PREV DISCUSSION...330 PM MST Sat Jan 21 2017...
Showers will gradually taper down over the area through the
evening into the overnight hours as a weather system exits New
Mexico. A second weather system will push quickly through the
state Sunday night through Tuesday, bringing heavy snow amounts
to the Northern Mountains starting late Sunday night. Ahead of
this storm system, temperatures will warm Sunday and Monday over
the Eastern Plains and the middle Rio Grande Valley. In the wake
of this system, expect temperatures to drop well below normal
area wide or the remainder of the work week.
In the short term, widespread showers will begin to taper off this
weekend as the shortwave ejects to the east. Areas of heavier snow
will continue over the the Northern Mountains and portions of the
Sacramentos, but these should diminish through the evening.
In the wake of this system winds will once again increase over
much of the area this evening through the early morning hours as a
strong jet aloft (130kts at 250mb, 50-70kts at 700mb) moves over
the area on the back side of the wave. Winds will be strongest
along the the southern half of the Central Mountain chain and into
the Eastern Plains south of I-40. Potentially damaging gusts are
possible closest to leeward side of the mountains where
downsloping is expected.
The pattern will stay quite active over the forecast area Sunday
through Tuesday as a more potent system pushes down from the
Pacific Northwest through the Four Corners and into the Southern
Plains as a broad longwave trough develops. Ahead of this system,
a short-lived ridge will move quickly over the area. This will
bring temperatures up briefly with the temperatures over the
Middle RGV and east of the Central Mountain Chain rising above
normal Sunday into Monday. Aloft, the 0C isotherm at 700mb will
push as far north as the I-40 corridor west of the Central
Mountains and up into SE Colorado east of the chain with cold
temperatures aloft remaining over the Northern Mountains.
Simultaneously, the leading edge of the next system will making
its way into the Four Corners region Sunday afternoon into Sunday
night. With the surge of warm air, precipitation type may be an
issue in some locations especially on Monday as temperatures at
the surface will still be warm but cold air advection aloft will
support mixed precip types. A combination of a moist atmosphere
and west to southwest flow aloft will help once again produce
heavy snows over the Northern Mountains. Current guidance
suggests totals from Sunday night through Tuesday morning of 4-8
inches at lower elevations with 12-18+ along higher portions of
the San Juans and the Sangre de Cristos.
Once the main system exits the region Tuesday, sensible weather
should quiet down with a blast of cold air pushing into the area.
Temperatures for most of the forecast area will fall below normal
for the remainder of the work week with high temperatures 10 to 15
degrees below normal.
The cool and windy weather pattern will continue with bouts of
precipitation ongoing into the middle of next week before turning
more dry. Precipitation will temporarily diminish by late this
evening and after midnight tonight, but the wind speeds will surge
aloft, leading to strong to even severe gusts at the surface/20ft
level. The strongest gusts will be found over the higher terrain and
just east of the central mountain chain. The downsloping breezes
will inhibit humidity recovery some, but a majority of the forecast
area will still observe excellent recoveries tonight into early
The respite from precipitation will be short-lived with new batches
arriving late Sunday in northwestern NM while stout winds prevail.
Strong winds will periodically develop and redevelop each day as the
next trough aloft slowly inches toward northern NM and CO into
Monday and Tuesday. The cooler temperatures and increasing chances
for rain and high elevation snow will preclude any critical fire
weather concerns, but winds will nonetheless be impactful. Snow
accumulations will likely exceed several inches in the northern and
western mountains, namely Monday night and Tuesday. Ventilation will
vastly improve into Monday and Tuesday amidst the strong winds.
By Wednesday, precipitation will reduce in coverage with mostly dry
conditions prevailing into Thursday and the rest of the week.
Northwest flow aloft will be brisk at times, and will keep
temperatures from reaching seasonal averages during the latter half
of the week. This will invoke poor ventilation and smoke dispersion
for any prescribed burning, but otherwise no critical or significant
fire weather concerns are foreseen.
High Wind Warning until 5 AM MST Sunday for the following zones...
Wind Advisory until 5 AM MST Sunday for the following zones...
Winter Storm Warning until 8 PM MST this evening for the following
Wind Advisory from 8 PM this evening to 5 AM MST Sunday for the
following zones... NMZ506-508.
Winter Weather Advisory until 8 PM MST this evening for the
following zones... NMZ501-503>505.
High Wind Warning from 8 PM this evening to 5 AM MST Sunday for the
following zones... NMZ526.