Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Great Falls, MT

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FXUS65 KTFX 250255
AFDTFX

AREA FORECAST DISCUSSION
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE GREAT FALLS MT
855 PM MDT Fri Oct 24 2014

.UPDATE...Westerly flow aloft will continue to bring a moist
Pacific airmass over Central Montana overnight. A band of
precipitation currently stretches from Washington state to the
Continental Divide with scattered showers occasionally moving off
the mountains into Central Montana. Models continue to show that a
building upper level ridge will push this band northward through
the night. Have updated forecast to increase pops to chance
category in my central and northern zones overnight. However, any
showers that move through this area will likely be light with only
one or two hundredths of an inch expected. Remainder of the
forecast is in good shape and no other changes were made. mpj

&&

.AVIATION...
UPDATED 2345Z.
VFR conditions expected through the TAF period. Widespread mid-level
ceilings will persist next several hours as west-southwest flow
aloft pushes broad Pacific moisture plume across the region. Current
satellite imagery already indicating southern boundary of the plume
over central Idaho has begun to gradually lift northward as high
pressure ridging over the Great Basin continues to strengthen.  Will
see steadily decreasing cloud cover from south-to-north through the
overnight hours.  Breezy winds will begin to decrease this evening.

&&

.PREV DISCUSSION...
/ISSUED 545 PM MDT Fri Oct 24 2014/
Tonight thru Monday...A rather unsettled weather pattern will reside
over the region for the next few days. A warm front continues to
slowly push northward through the region. Light rain showers and
high elevation snow showers are falling along the front.
Precipitation amounts are quite light though. Expect the
precipitation to slowly shift northward tonight into North Central
MT. However...most areas will just see a passing shower/sprinkle.
For Saturday...warmer air will move into the region for just one
day. Expect mostly dry conditions along with mild temperatures. By
late Saturday night...the next Pacific cold front will be
approaching the region. This cold front will have better dynamics
with the frontal passage...thus gusty winds and a better chance
for precipitation is expected over portions of the region. Cooler
air will move into all areas on Sunday...with afternoon highs
about 10 to 15 degrees cooler than Saturday. The best chance for
precip on Sunday will be over the Rocky Mountain Front and in
Southwest MT. Snow accumulations of an inch or two are possible in
the mountains...mainly above 6000 feet. For Sunday night...the
upper level trof will be moving through North Central MT. As a
result...the best chance for precip Sunday night and Monday will
shift northward into the Havre area. Enough cold air is expected
to move into the region by Monday morning...that a rain/snow mix
or all snow will be possible at all elevations of North Central
MT. Snow accumulations on Monday morning will generally be less
than 1/2 inch at lower elevations...but that snowfall might be
just enough to create a few slippery spots...especially on bridges
and higher elevation mountain passes. Temperatures will remain
well below normal for Monday afternoon.

In terms of highlights...no winter weather highlights are planned
for at this time...but should snow accumulations increase a
bit...some winter weather highlights might be needed. There is also
a small potential for strong winds Saturday night into Sunday over
the Northern Rockies and the Cut Bank area. Right now I have kept
wind speeds below warning criteria...but this will continue to be
monitored closely as well. Brusda

Tuesday through Friday...The upper level system exits Tuesday
with weak transient high pressure briefly moving over the region.
A generally unsettled westerly flow develops Wednesday and several
disturbances embedded in the flow will pass over Montana
Wednesday. A low pressure system off the west coast will bring
warm southwesterly flow to the region by the end of the week.
Temperatures will be cool into Tuesday before warming up later in
the week. Overall chances of meaningful precipitation for the
plains remain fairly low throughout the period...but a period of
heavier precipitation is possible Wednesday over the Rocky
Mountain Front. EG/Brusda

&&

.PRELIMINARY POINT TEMPS/POPS...
GTF  40  68  45  53 /  40   0  10  20
CTB  37  60  41  52 /  30   0  10  20
HLN  39  70  43  55 /  40   0  10  30
BZN  33  70  37  54 /  20   0  10  40
WEY  28  60  28  41 /   0   0  20  60
DLN  38  69  40  50 /  10   0  20  40
HVR  38  63  40  59 /  10   0  10  10
LWT  39  69  43  57 /  20   0  10  20

&&

.TFX WATCHES/WARNINGS/ADVISORIES...
NONE.
&&

$$

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