Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Billings, MT

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000
FXUS65 KBYZ 311006
AFDBYZ

AREA FORECAST DISCUSSION
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE BILLINGS MT
306 AM MST SAT JAN 31 2015

.SHORT TERM...VALID FOR TDY AND SUN...

COLD FRONT MOVING INTO NORTHERN MONTANA THIS MORNING BUT NOT VERY
ARCTIC LIKE WITH TEMPERATURES ONLY DOWN TO 18 DEGREES AT CALGARY.
HOWEVER ITS A BIG AIRMASS CHANGE FROM WE HAVE BEEN EXPERIENCING
AND TEMPERATURES WILL BECOME MUCH COLDER TODAY DURING THE
AFTERNOON HOURS. AHEAD OF THE FRONTAL ARRIVAL THERE IS A PATCH OF
STRATUS THAT IS TRYING TO PROGRESS INTO NORTHERN SECTIONS OF
SOUTHEAST MONTANA BUT CLOUD COVER IS CAUSING IT SLOW ITS MOVEMENT.
STILL EXPECT THIS STRATUS TO GET CLOSE TO A BAKER TO MILES CITY
LINE BY SUNRISE AND SOME PATCHES OF FREEZING FOG ARE EXPECTED.

FRONT WILL PROGRESS THROUGH THE AREA FROM NORTH TO SOUTH THROUGH
THE LATE MORNING AND EARLY AFTERNOON HOURS WITH ITS PROGRESS A BIT
FASTER THROUGH SOUTHEAST MONTANA. MODELS SHOW LIGHT SNOW
DEVELOPING MAINLY IN THE POST FRONTAL AREA IN SOUTHEAST MONTANA AS
SHORTWAVE ENERGY TRACKS OVER THE AREA LATER IN THE DAY. HRRR SHOWS
ANOTHER AREA OF SNOW DEVELOPING IN THE BILLINGS AREA AND LOCATIONS
30 MILES SOUTH AND WEST AS UPSLOPE PLAYS A FACTOR IN PROVIDING
LIFT. THIS WINDOW FOR SNOW ALREADY DISSIPATES BY MIDNIGHT AS
HEIGHTS BEGIN TO BUILD ALOFT AND THE COLD AIR PUSH BEGINS TO
TRANSLATE EAST. GIVEN THE SHORT WINDOW AND NOT A STRONG ALIGNMENT
FOR LIFT CONFIDENT SNOW AMOUNTS WILL BE LIGHT AND GENERALLY AROUND
AN INCH THOUGH A FEW LOCATIONS COULD SEE CLOSER TO 2. BIGGER
THREAT IS THE SNOW FALLING ON WARM ROADS AND MELTING AND FREEZING.
THIS STILL LOOKS REASONABLE ESPECIALLY IF A FEW HOURS OF SUNSHINE
OCCUR BEFORE THE FRONT. CURRENT IR IMAGERY INDICATES THIS IS
LIKELY ESPECIALLY FOR THE WESTERN HALF OF THE AREA.

TEMPERATURES WILL BE FALLING FROM THE MID TO UPPER 30S THIS
MORNING THROUGH THE 20S THIS AFTERNOON. LOWS WILL SETTLE IN THE 5
TO 15 DEGREE RANGE OVERNIGHT. COLD BY COMPARISON TO THIS PAST WEEK
BUT NOT DRAMATIC FOR JANUARY.

SUNDAY THE AIRMASS MODERATES AS THE DEEPER COLD AIR MOVES AWAY
FROM THE REGION WITH A WARM FRONT MOVING INTO THE WESTERN ZONES BY
LATE AFTERNOON AND ACROSS THE AREA SUNDAY NIGHT. MOST OF THE DAY
WILL BE DRY BUT THE WARM FRONT DOES INCREASE MOISTURE OVER THE
WESTERN ZONES WHICH WILL BRING A CHANCE FOR MOUNTAINS SNOW. BORSUM

.LONG TERM...VALID FOR MON...TUE...WED...THU...FRI...

LITTLE IN THE WAY OF CHANGES TO THE EXTENDED FORECAST PERIOD...AS
THE OVERALL STORY REMAINS THE SAME. COLDER AND UNSETTLED WEATHER
TO START THE WORK WEEK...WITH A RETURN TO ABOVE SEASONAL AVERAGE
TEMPERATURES TO END THE WEEK.

MODELS CONTINUE TO HAVE TIMING DIFFERENCES FOR ARCTIC
INTRUSION...BUT GENERAL CONSENSUS POINTS TOWARD BEST PRECIP
POTENTIAL ON TUESDAY AFTERNOON/EVENING. ONE TREND THAT SEEMS TO
PERSIST OVER THE PAST FEW MODEL RUNS IS A LOWER QPF TYPE
EVENT...FOR BOTH THE GFS AND THE ECMWF...SO HEAVY SNOW IS
LESS LIKELY.

UPPER LEVEL RIDGING BEGINS PUSHING INTO THE REGION WEDNESDAY
NIGHT INTO THURSDAY MORNING. THE RIDGE DOMINATES THE PATTERN
THROUGH THE REMAINDER OF THE PERIOD...KEEPING GENERALLY DRY
CONDITIONS IN PLACE. THERE DO APPEAR TO BE SEVERAL SHORTWAVES
SLIPPING THROUGH THE FLOW HOWEVER...BRINGING PERIODIC POTENTIAL
FOR MOUNTAIN SHOWERS THROUGH THE PERIOD. A STRONGER WAVE PUSHES
INTO THE REGION SATURDAY...WITH PLENTY OF ASSOCIATED PACIFIC
MOISTURE...WHICH SHOULD BRING SHOWERS ACROSS THE REGION. AAG
&&

.AVIATION...

VFR CONDITIONS PERSIST ACROSS MUCH OF THE REGION THIS
MORNING. IFR CEILINGS AND VISIBILITIES WITH LOW CLOUDS AND PATCHY
FOG ARE POISED JUST NORTHEAST OF THE REGION...AND ARE ANTICIPATED
TO SPREAD INTO SOUTHEAST MONTANA THIS MORNING. LIGHT FREEZING
DRIZZLE IS POSSIBLE AT KMLS AND KBHK UNTIL THE CLOUD LAYER DEEPENS
ENOUGH FOR LIGHT SNOW TO BEGIN BY SATURDAY AFTERNOON. EXPECT TO
SEE CLOUD DECK DEVELOPING AND CONDITIONS LOWERING TO SUB- VFR
LEVELS ACROSS THE AREA THIS AFTERNOON AS LIGHT SNOW DEVELOPS. AAG

&&

.PRELIMINARY POINT TEMP/POPS...

    TDY SUN     MON     TUE     WED     THU     FRI
-------------------------------------------------------
BIL 038 014/032 029/045 028/028 012/028 021/043 033/053
    6/S 71/E    23/W    55/J    42/J    21/B    11/N
LVM 040 016/038 032/047 034/040 020/035 026/046 034/055
    2/O 51/N    33/W    46/J    42/J    21/B    11/N
HDN 036 010/030 024/043 024/028 006/026 015/041 026/051
    6/S 61/B    23/W    55/J    41/B    21/B    11/B
MLS 032 007/024 020/035 018/019 000/019 009/035 023/047
    9/S 61/B    24/J    55/J    21/B    11/B    11/B
4BQ 042 009/028 022/043 025/029 007/023 016/042 027/055
    3/O 71/B    23/W    34/J    41/B    11/B    11/B
BHK 027 003/020 015/033 016/019 901/014 005/034 022/046
    8/S 81/B    24/J    54/J    21/B    11/B    11/B
SHR 040 011/029 021/044 025/036 009/030 015/042 026/053
    1/N 31/B    22/W    25/J    52/J    21/B    11/B

&&

.BYZ WATCHES/WARNINGS/ADVISORIES...
MT...NONE.
WY...NONE.

&&

$$
WEATHER.GOV/BILLINGS


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