Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS St. Louis, MO
FXUS63 KLSX 220345
AREA FORECAST DISCUSSION...UPDATED
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE ST LOUIS MO
945 PM CST Sun Dec 21 2014
Issued at 925 PM CST Sun Dec 21 2014
Cloudy skies have moved into all but the far eastern part of the
CWA at this hour. Latest trends suggests that this area will cloud
over within the hour, so expect the entire area to return to being
cloudy the rest of the night. With clouds and a bit higher winds,
do not expect temperatures to fall more than a few degrees tonight,
so raised going temperatures a bit in a few areas. Expanded the
slight chances for light rain eastward late tonight across eastern
Missouri as low level moisture convergence will increase ahead of
weak shortwave trough that is rounding base of trough currently
over the southern Plains.
.SHORT TERM: (Through Late Tonight)
Issued at 334 PM CST Sun Dec 21 2014
Low level moisture will be on the increase late tonight ahead of
next weather system, but rain will not move into central and
northeast Missouri, west central Illinois til after midnight.
Otherwise, cloudy conditions to persist with low temperatures only
in the low 30s over far eastern sections to around 40 over central
Missouri, so do not need to worry about any freezing or frozen
.LONG TERM: (Monday through Next Sunday)
Issued at 334 PM CST Sun Dec 21 2014
(Monday - Wednesday)
All guidance based off of the 21/12z model cycle still giving strong
support to going forecast trends that indicate a rainy Monday is in
the offing for most of the CWA. Upper trof over the central CONUS
will be deepening over the next 12 hours as several shortwaves work
into the mean trof position, with the strongest of these pushing
into the mid MO valley on Monday morning and closing off into an
upper low over IA by Monday afternoon and evening. As this system
approaches late tonight and early Monday, southerly flow will
increase through the lower troposphere leading to a significant
deepening of the moisture over the region. Ascent from the
approaching upper level dynamics combined with the low level
isentropic ascent should produce a fairly rapid increase of rainfall
across most of the area during the morning hours, with this rain
continuing over much FA into the afternoon.
Dry slot will be wrapping into the system Monday night as the system
occludes, with model consensus of the translation of the dry slot
suggesting that rainfall will be diminishing from NW to SE across
the CWA on Monday night. By 12z Tuesday, relatively dry air will be
over NW sections of the CWA, while on the se fringes of the dry
slot deep moisture and baroclinicity will draped from AR into the
lower Ohio Valley. will carry a chance of precip over about the
SE 2/3 of the CWA on Tuesday, with highest PoPs over SE sections
of the FA closer to the aforementioned moisture and baroclinic zone.
This leads into a very tricky forecast heading into midweek, as
longwave trof lingers over the CONUS. This is one of the trickier
patterns of the winter season, as models often struggle with speed
and intensity of shortwaves that are meandering through the trof.
And in this case, forecast concerns are amplified due to the fact
that strong low level baroclinicity and deep moisture...two key
ingredients for strong synoptic scale winter systems...will be
lurking just off to our SE. Models have already been struggling
with the evolution of this pattern... last nights 00z GFS and off-
cycle 06z NAM runs hinted at low closing off to our south with
accumulating snow for a large part of our FA, but 12z runs are
less bullish on this forecast, and suggest more of an open system
that will produce heavier precip in the warmer air over parts of
the Ohio Valley and areas east.
In this pattern, odds are extremely high that individual solutions
will continue to flip-flop on exact trends, so at this juncture feel
most comfortable leaning on model consensus for the large scale
In general, the weather on Tuesday night and Christmas Eve Day
should become a bit more unsettled as another shortwave enters
the base of the longwave trof and the entire system begins to push
east. This should certainly generate another wave of precip, but
the big question is where. GFS remains the most robust model in
regards to precip during this time, with measurable QPF over about
the eastern half of the CWA, while all the other solutions focus
this axis from extreme e AR into KY and TN. Forecast soundings
indicate the low level AMS over our SE counties (where the QPF
would be heaviest) will be too warm for any frozen precip Tuesday
night, but may cool off enough to support some snow during the day
on Wednesday as the precip winds down. Thermal profile looks more
favorable for snow over our NW counties, but here the precip
should be quite light.
At this point, accumulating snow in any part of our CWA look
iffy. But once again this is a tricky pattern...so holiday
travelers should continue to monitor the latest forecasts.
(Christmas Day - Sunday)
It now appears that Christmas Day will be fairly tranquil and
relatively mild as upper trof pushes east and ridging temporarily
allows warmer air to build into the central CONUS.
Medium range consensus remains fairly good into Friday, as a lead
shortwave begins the process of developing another trof axis over
the central CONUS. Have maintained some slight chance PoPs as the
shortwave pushes through the region.
Although medium range models diverge heading into next weekend
with the location and intensity of the upper level trof, lowering
of heights should yield below normal temps.
.AVIATION: (For the 00z TAFs through 00z Monday Evening)
Issued at 526 PM CST Sun Dec 21 2014
While main focus will be precip and cigs on Mon, will also need to
focus on cigs for a few hours this evening, mainly at UIN. Believe
COU will lift to VFR at or shortly after 00z as the TAFs become
valid. UIN has become MVFR and will likely drop below 2 kft for a
few hours this evening. However, this is somewhat uncertain as the
low level flow shud become more sly. Otherwise, winds will remain
sely to ssely until Mon afternoon as the precip ends. Expect cigs
to drop around or shortly after sunrise Mon as precip begins,
then drop to IFR at COU/UIN mid to late morning. IFR cigs at
SUS/CPS on Mon is more uncertain and have only hinted at IFR
possible for now.
Specifics for KSTL: VFR and dry conditions expected thru tonight.
Expect MVFR cigs to move in around sunrise with precip beginning
shortly after. IFR cigs will be possible, but confidence is too
low attm. Expect precip to come to an end around 00z Tues with
winds veering to become sly.