Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Albuquerque, NM
FXUS65 KABQ 191138 AAA
Area Forecast Discussion...UPDATED
National Weather Service Albuquerque NM
438 AM MST Thu Jan 19 2017
12Z TAF CYCLE
Pockets of IFR/MVFR conditions exist across N/C NM but much more
limited in spatial coverage/duration compared to the previous
overnights. Still cant rule out a drainage wind developing at FMN
and drawing some of the lower cigs into the terminal site so
indicated that in a tempo group. GUP will see improved cigs during
the next few hours as mid/high clouds thicken from west to east.
Tried to capture that increased cloud trend as best I could
during the day period. SH will break out over the western/central
mtn ranges as the day progresses but impacts to terminal sites
such as FMN/GUP are not likely until later in the day and
overnight hrs. Wind will be the main issue across the east with
gusts up to 30 kt possible at LVS/TCC/ROW.
.PREV DISCUSSION...345 AM MST Thu Jan 19 2017...
A very short lived ridge will inhabit portions of New Mexico today
as one upper level storm system exits to our east and another system
approaches from the west. Tonight through Friday, the higher terrain
of the west and central could pick up 2 to 5 inches of snow in
general. A stronger storm will push into New Mexico from the west
Friday night and Saturday bringing more significant snowfall to the
western and central mountains. The east will be mostly dry but
windy. Unsettled and colder weather will continue into next week.
Wind, precipitation and colder temperatures will be the dominant
weather featured through the weekend and into the middle of next
week. The first system looks to produce mostly advisory level snows
for the western and some of the central mts, generally 2 to 5 inches
tonight into Friday though can see the peaks of the San Juan getting
warning amounts. Therefore have held off on any winter highlights,
at least for now. The second round still appears more substantial
with potential for warning criteria snows western mts. However,
trimmed back some of the guidance QPF as it would have resulted in
about 3-4 inches of liquid in our portion of the Gila which seems
pretty overdone. Wind may also be a factor at exposed areas of the
higher terrain through Saturday. Wind also to crank up today along
the central mt chain and into portions of the plains.
An upper trough to dominate the region early to mid next week.
Instead of a single upper low previously depicted, the pattern is
such that occasional disturbances will drop into the trough,
sparking rounds of increasing then decreasing precipitation.
Temperatures will trend to below average, by as much as 10 to 15 or
even 20 degrees by next Tuesday through Thursday.
Brief break in the unsettled weather today before the storm track
becomes active again tonight through the earlier half of next week.
Sunday still appears to be the bigger break day amongst three
Pacific wave passages. Stronger surface wind flow...especially
across the southern half of the area and higher vent rates are also
A transitory ridge will move over the area during the day period
today. Embedded within the ridge will be a stronger mid level dry
intrusion. Adjusted dewpoint forecast a few degrees lower than model
guidance across the eastern half...where downsloping will occur.
Surface winds will increase with the strongest flow over the
mountains and areas along and to the east of the central mountains
including the EC/SE plains. Localized alignment of strong
wind/marginally low RH expected across the EC/SE plains. Cloud cover
will quickly increase from west to east however as the first Pacific
The ridge will break down Thu night and allow abundant amounts of
Pacific moisture to flow in from the west. The first Pacific wave
impact will occur tonight and last through Friday. Very little break
expected in the precipitation as the second system is projected to
bear down on the forecast area Fri night into Saturday. Wetting
precipitation...mainly in the form of snow and lowest elevation
rain...will impact the western half of the area favoring the west
slopes of each of the mountain ranges. Significant snow
accumulations are expected with the one-two wave punch. Ventilation
will improve as the jet will be centered over the area. Surface wind
will also increase and impact pretty much all elevations. Strong
wind is expected over the higher terrain and portions of the plains.
Humidity will generally be on the higher side although some
downslope drying impacts expected across portions of the plains.
Models still show another transitory ridge Sat night into Sunday
before the third wave bears down on the area. Did adjust model
dewpoint guidance slightly lower Sunday afternoon across the eastern
half. Precipitation and abundant cloud cover should fill in across
the far west later on Sunday creating quite a wet to dry transition
zone across the forecast area. Ventilation is also projected to be
much lower Sunday compared to the previous days.
The jet stream will become unsettled again early next week as a much
colder wave impacts the area. Snow will be largely found across the
area but eastern areas will remain devoid of the significant
precipitation due to downsloping. Wetting precipitation is very
likely with cooler than normal temps. Ventilation looks to be pretty
good early next week with some gustier surface wind.
Extended models still show a cooler northerly flow developing over
the area during the latter half of next week. There is a chance that
a piece of the 3rd wave could break off and spin over the area for
awhile and create additional shower chances. Either way this period
looks cooler than normal by several degrees with higher RH.
Ventilation would most likely be quite variable across the area with
a growing area of poor vent rates.
Wind Advisory until 5 PM MST this afternoon for the following