Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Albuquerque, NM

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000
FXUS65 KABQ 241154 AAA
AFDABQ

AREA FORECAST DISCUSSION...UPDATED
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE ALBUQUERQUE NM
454 AM MST WED DEC 24 2014

.AVIATION...
12Z TAF CYCLE
VFR CONDITIONS TO PREVAIL THROUGH AT LEAST 12Z THU. WINDS TO BE
LIGHTER MOST LOCALES TODAY THAN WAS THE CASE TUE...BUT A
DEVELOPING DEEPENING LEE SIDE TROUGH TODAY WILL CREATE MARGINALLY
GUSTY SW WINDS AT KLVS AND KTCC BY AFTERNOON. SOMEWHAT STRONGER
WINDS WILL DEVELOP BETWEEN KLVS AND RUIDOSO WITH GUSTS POSSIBLY AS
HIGH AS 30 OR 35KTS BETWEEN ROUGHLY 19Z AND 00Z.

43

&&

.PREV DISCUSSION...310 AM MST WED DEC 24 2014...
.SYNOPSIS...
THE FIRST SIGNS OF SNOW WILL MOVE INTO NORTHWEST NEW MEXICO ON
CHRISTMAS DAY...AND THIS WILL SPREAD RAPIDLY OVER WESTERN AND
CENTRAL PORTIONS OF THE STATE ON CHRISTMAS NIGHT AS A SLOW MOVING
SYSTEM OUT OF THE NORTHEAST PACIFIC OCEAN DRIFTS THROUGH. SNOW WILL
TAPER OFF BY THE WEEKEND...LEAVING ONLY THE NORTHERN MOUNTAINS
WITH CHANCES FOR WEEKEND SNOW. MUCH COLDER AIR SLIDING SOUTHWARD
INTO NEW MEXICO WILL BRING A RENEWED CHANCE FOR SNOW TO THE
EASTERN HALF OF THE STATE THROUGH MIDWEEK NEXT WEEK.

&&

.DISCUSSION...
CURRENTLY...STRONG AND TURBULENT NORTHERLY FLOW BLOWING OVER NEW
MEXICO...AS UPSTREAM RIDGE BUILDS FROM THE EASTERN PACIFIC OCEAN
TO THE DAKOTAS. AT THE SURFACE...DOME OF HIGH PRESSURE PARKED OVER THE
CENTRAL ROCKIES...WITH A DIP IN THE DOME OVER NEW MEXICO...AND THE
DOME REBUILDING STRENGTH OVER THE TEXAS BIG BEND COUNTRY AND
ADJACENT PORTIONS OF NORTHERN MEXICO.

MODELS...IN GOOD AGREEMENT THROUGH NEW YEARS DAY. TROUGH FROM
WESTERN ONTARIO TO THE HEART OF TEXAS WILL MOVE EAST...AND PERMIT
UPSTREAM RIDGE FROM THE TROPICAL EAST PACIFIC ACROSS THE ROCKIES
TO THE DAKOTAS TO BUILD IN ON CHRISTMAS EVE. NEXT INBOUND SYSTEM
DEEPENING OVER THE PACIFIC NORTHWEST WILL MOVE TO THE FOUR CORNERS
AND CLOSE OFF INTO A LOW OVER UTAH CHRISTMAS NIGHT...WITH VERY
SLOW DRIFT EASTWARD ACROSS NEW MEXICO THROUGH THE DAY FRIDAY INTO
SATURDAY. NEXT SYSTEM TAKING SHAPE OVER THE INLAND NORTHWEST WILL
AMPLIFY OVER THE GREAT BASIN EARLY TUESDAY AND SHARPEN POSITIVELY
TILTED AMPLITUDE FROM CENTRAL CANADA ACROSS THE FOUR CORNERS TO
SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA...AND THE SLOW DRIFT OF THIS SYSTEM ACROSS NEW
MEXICO WILL KEEP WEATHER UNSETTLED THROUGH NEW YEARS DAY. TROUGH
WILL FINALLY DRIFT EASTWARD INTO TEXAS BY FRIDAY...RETURNING NEW
MEXICO TO CHILLY NORTHWEST FLOW FOR THE FIRST WEEKEND OF THE NEW YEAR.

FOR TODAY...A FEW DEGREES WARMER...AS THE FIRST SIGNS OF A RIDGE
FROM THE TROPICAL EAST PACIFIC TO THE FOUR CORNERS KEEPS SKIES
MOSTLY CLEAR. AFTERNOON WESTERLY BREEZES MOSTLY ALONG THE EAST
SLOPES AND ADJACENT PLAINS OF THE CENTRAL MOUNTAIN CHAIN...AND
NEAR THE TEXAS LINE AROUND CLOVIS AND PORTALES.

FOR CHRISTMAS DAY...LARGE PACIFIC SYSTEM CORE OVER UTAH WITH
SURFACE LOW DEEPENING OVER EASTERN COLORADO WILL INTRODUCE THE
FIRST ROUNDS OF SHOWERS CHRISTMAS DAY...WITH LIGHT SNOW CHANGING
OVER TO RAIN OVER THE VALLEYS...AND REMAINING ALL SNOW OVER THE
HIGH COUNTRY. HEAVIEST SNOWFALL DURING THE DAY WILL BE ALONG THE
COLORADO LINE IN THE SAN JUAN AND TUSAS MOUNTAINS...WITH LESSER
AMOUNTS OVER THE CHUSKAS...JEMEZ...AND WESTERN SLOPES OF THE
SANGRE DE CRISTO RANGE. SHOWERS WILL EXPAND RAPIDLY TO ALL OF
WESTERN AND CENTRAL NEW MEXICO CHRISTMAS NIGHT...WITH SOME
EXPANSION OUT OF THE SANGRE DE CRISTO RANGE INTO THE NORTHEAST
HIGHLANDS AND ADJACENT PLAINS BY FRIDAY MORNING. WITH TROUGH BASE
SWIPING EASTWARD ACROSS NEW MEXICO MAINLY SOUTH OF INTERSTATE
40...CATRON COUNTY WILL START TO PICK UP MORE WIDESPREAD AND
HEAVIER SNOWFALL CHRISTMAS NIGHT AS LIGHT SNOW CONTINUES OVER THE
REMAINDER OF THE WEST AND CENTRAL. DESPITE THE WINTRY
FORECAST...DAYTIME TEMPERATURES WILL RUN NEAR NORMAL CENTRAL AND
WEST...WITH HIGHS 3 TO 8 DEGREES WARMER THAN NORMAL OVER THE EAST
FOR CHRISTMAS DAY. WIND WILL ADD ANOTHER ELEMENT TO CHRISTMAS DAY
WEATHER INTEREST...WITH WINDY SOUTHWEST CONDITIONS SETTING UP ALONG
AND SOUTH OF INTERSTATE 40...CLOSEST TO THE TROUGH BASE AS IT
DRIFTS THROUGH NEW MEXICO. FOR NOW...SPEEDS WILL APPROACH ADVISORY
LEVELS BUT SHOULD RUN SHY OF WARNING CRITERIA.

FOR FRIDAY...EASTERN COLORADO SURFACE LOW AND ASSOCIATED COLD
FRONT PLUNGING SOUTHWARD TO THE TEXAS PANHANDLE AND TEXAS BIG BEND
COUNTRY...AS TROUGH ALOFT CENTERS UP ON NORTHERN NEW MEXICO...AND
FAST FLOW ROARS ACROSS THE SOUTHERN HALF OF THE STATE. TURNING
MUCH COLDER...WITH TEMPERATURES 10 TO 20 DEGREES BELOW LATE
DECEMBER NORMALS FRIDAY AFTERNOON. ONCE THE FRONT MOVES
THROUGH....WIND SPEEDS WILL DROP OFF TO EASE WIND ADVISORY
CONCERNS. COLD TEMPERATURES...CONTINUED PRECIPITATION AND REDUCED
WINDS ALL SET UP SNOW SHOWER CHANCES FOR ALL OF NORTHERN NEW
MEXICO...AND THE HIGH COUNTRY OF THE SOUTH...WITH RAIN CONFINED TO
THE SOUTHEAST PLAINS CLOSER TO THE TEXAS BORDER. HEAVIER SNOWFALL
REMAINS CONFINED TO THE NORTHERN MOUNTAINS...BUT SNOW COVERAGE
WILL EXTEND SOUTHWARD ACROSS THE SOUTH CENTRAL HIGH COUNTRY DURING
THE DAY ON FRIDAY. THROUGH FRIDAY NIGHT...SNOW COVERAGE WILL
EXPAND EASTWARD ACROSS ALL OF THE EASTERN PLAINS...WITH COVERAGE
CONTINUING OVER MOST OF THE NORTH.

FOR SATURDAY...BROAD TROUGH ALOFT SHARPENING TO INTENSE POSITIVELY
TILTED WAVE FROM WESTERN NEBRASKA ACROSS WESTERN NEW MEXICO TO
NORTHERN SONORA...AS SURFACE HIGH PRESSURE BUILDS OVER THE CENTRAL
ROCKIES. CONTINUED DOUBLE DIGITS BELOW NORMAL TEMPERATURES FOR LATE
DECEMBER...WITH SNOW SHOWER COVERAGE CONTINUING THROUGH SATURDAY
NIGHT OVER THE NORTHERN AND EASTERN PORTIONS OF THE STATE AS
COVERAGE TAPERS OFF OVER THE WEST. GENERALLY LIGHT WINDS.

OUTLOOK...SUNDAY THROUGH TUESDAY...CONTINUED DOUBLE DIGITS BELOW
LATE DECEMBER NORMALS AS TROUGH OVER NEW MEXICO SHEARS RAPIDLY TO
THE EAST ON SUNDAY. INTENSIFYING ZONAL FLOW ALOFT IN CIRCULATION
ABOUT BROAD TROUGH EXTENDING FROM THE CENTRAL PLAINS STATES ACROSS
THE CENTRAL ROCKIES TO NORTHERN CALIFORNIA WILL PUSH COLD FRONT
INTO NORTHEAST NEW MEXICO ON MONDAY...AND START INTRODUCING
INCREASED CLOUD COVER AND BROADER CHANCES FOR HIGH COUNTRY SNOW
MONDAY NIGHT AND TUESDAY OVER THE NORTH. ANOTHER BIG PUSH OF
COLDER AIR INTO EASTERN NEW MEXICO LATE TUESDAY WILL EXPAND SNOW
COVERAGE OVER MUCH OF THE NORTH AND EAST TUESDAY NIGHT IN THE
TEETH OF A BRISK EASTERLY WIND.

SHY

&&

.FIRE WEATHER...
WINDS QUITE A BIT LIGHTER TODAY THAN ON TUE THOUGH HIGH ELEVATION
RIDGE TOP WINDS WILL BE BREEZY AT TIMES OVER THE CENTRAL MTNS AND
ADJACENT AREAS TO THE EAST. MIN RH VALUES TO BE SUBSTANTIALLY LOWER
ACROSS E HALF OF NM...BUT STILL LIKELY TO REMAIN ABOVE CRITICAL
VALUES. VENTILATION WILL BE DRAMATICALLY LOWER TODAY ALL
AREAS...POOR TO LOCALLY FAIR EXCEPT FOR MOST OF EAST CENTRAL AND SE
NM WHERE SOME GOOD LEVELS WILL SHOW UP.

WIDESPREAD BREEZY TO WINDY CONDITIONS RETURN FOR CHRISTMAS DAY AS
ANOTHER PACIFIC TROUGH DRIVES TOWARD THE STATE. THE ROBUST WINDS TO
COINCIDE WITH 15-19 PCT HUMIDITY ACROSS THE E CENTRAL AND SE
PLAINS. HAINES 5 VALUES SHOULD BE LIMITED TO ROOSEVELT COUNTY...
ALTHOUGH HIGH TEMPS SHOULD BE ROUGHLY 5 TO 7 DEGREES ABOVE THE NORM.
COULD GET CLOSE TO 1 OR 2 HOURS OF CRITICAL FIRE WEATHER CONDITIONS.
VENTILATION WILL TREND UP ACCORDINGLY. SOME PRECIP WILL BE POSSIBLE
WITH THE MAIN TROUGH PASSAGE LATER THU AND THU NIGHT BUT WETTING
MOISTURE SHOULD BE LOCALIZED AND FAVOR THE N CENTRAL AND NW MTNS...
THOUGH SOME FCST MODELS INDICATE THAT EASTERN AND FAR SOUTHERN
PORTIONS OF FCST AREA MAY SEE SOME CHANCE OF SPOTTY WETTING PRECIP
AS WELL LATER THU NIGHT AND FRI. SO SOME UNCERTAINTY STILL REMAINS.

BACK DOOR COLD FRONT STILL INDICATED TO BE DROPPING SOUTH ACROSS THE
EASTERN PLAINS FRI FOLLOWING THE TROUGH PASSAGE. COOLER THAN NORMAL
HIGH TEMPERATURES WILL RETURN FRI FOR ALL THE AREA. DESPITE THE
SURFACE COOLING...THE AIR MASS ALOFT WILL MUCH COLDER SO MIXING
HEIGHTS ARE EXPECTED TO BE ABOVE NORMAL...MAKING VENTILATION AT
LEAST GOOD TO LOCALLY EXCELLENT MOST AREAS EXCEPT ROUGHLY THE NE
THIRD OR SO BEHIND THE BACK DOOR FRONT.

A SECONDARY TROUGH OR TWO STILL MAY DEVELOP AND MOVE THROUGH OVER
THE WEEKEND...BUT FCST MODELS ARE NOT SHOWING TOO MUCH WIND OR
PRECIP WITH THIS...THOUGH CHILLY CONDITIONS WILL PERSIST WITH RH
PROBABLY REMAINING ABOVE 20 PCT.

43

&&

.ABQ WATCHES/WARNINGS/ADVISORIES...
NONE.

&&

$$








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