Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Albuquerque, NM

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FXUS65 KABQ 141749 AAB

Area Forecast Discussion...UPDATED
National Weather Service Albuquerque NM
1049 AM MST Tue Nov 14 2017

An upper level trough crossing north of NM will cause winds to
become gusty today, especially along the east slopes of the central
mountain chain and across the east central plains where a lee trough
is in place. Wind directions will shift out of the northwest this
afternoon and evening with the arrival of a Pacific cold front. A
gusty back door cold front will then plunge southwestward through
the eastern plains tonight, and into the ABQ, SAF and Carrizozo areas
early Wednesday morning with a gusty east wind below canyons. The air
behind the front looks too dry for a return of low clouds and fog to
the eastern plains tonight.



.PREV DISCUSSION...222 AM MST Tue Nov 14 2017...
Near record to record high temperatures are forecast for much of the
eastern plains today as downslope west winds combine with warm
temperatures aloft. Elsewhere, temperatures will once again be well
above average for mid November. A backdoor cold front will drop
south through eastern New Mexico tonight and then west into the Rio
Grande Valley Wednesday morning. This front will result in some cooling
but high temperatures on Wednesday will remain near seasonal averages
east and above average central and west. High temperatures on
Thursday will increase once again to well above average areawide. A
mainly dry Pacific cold front is forecast to push through the state
late- day Friday into Friday night, resulting in 10 to 20 degrees of
cooling Saturday. A few showers and mountain snow showers are
possible in the mountain near the Colorado line Friday and Friday


Zonal flow aloft remains in place over NM this morning. As the
westerly flow aloft results in a lee side trough/low across southeast
CO, south and southeast winds on the southern periphery of the low
continue to draw up Gulf moisture into southeast NM. This moisture
is currently resulting in fog and low clouds for much of the plains
south of I-40 and east of U.S. Hwy 285. Models agree that the lee sfc
low/trough will slide east later today, allowing dry west winds to
scour out the low level moisture. Near record to record high
temperatures are likely for much of the plains this afternoon. A weak
backdoor cold front will temporarily end the record warmth tonight
and Wednesday. The front will squirt westward into the RGV Wednesday
morning, cooling high temperatures by a few degrees Wednesday. The
west is expected to remain above to well above average Wednesday.
The rest of the state will join the west on Thursday as southwest
winds develop and temperatures warm across central and eastern NM.

GFS and ECWMF agree that a fairly stout Pacific cold front will
push from northwest to southeast across the state late-day Friday
into Friday night. A few showers will accompany the front mainly in
the Tusas and Sangre de Cristo mountains near the CO line. The main
impact from this feature, however, will be strong west winds Friday
afternoon and evening.

Coldest morning of the next seven still looking like Sunday. Once
again, raw and bias corrected temperature guidance staying above the
freezing mark for the ABQ Sunport. If the temperature does stay
above freezing Sunday morning at the Sunport, the record for the
latest freeze on record will likely be broken. Since the weather
station was moved from the valley to the ABQ Airport in 1937,
freezing temperatures have been observed every single year on or
before November 22 for the past 80 years.

GFS and ECMWF are finally showing signs that the convection across
the eastern Pacific Ocean will begin to draw at least a portion of
the polar jet farther south into the Southwest U.S. early next week.
Both models bring either an open wave trough or closed low through
the Southern Rockies Tuesday or Tuesday night. ECWMF is farther south
but the timing is very similar to the GFS. It`s about time.



A warmer day is expected today while breezy west winds mix down to
the surface over much of the forecast area this afternoon. Humidity
is recovering nicely early this morning, but should plummet to 15 to
25 percent in most zones by late afternoon. An hour or two of
locally critical fire weather conditions could occur in the
northeast plains/highlands, but a widespread long duration event is
not expected. Increased mixing heights and better overall vertical
mixing will also yield good to excellent smoke ventilation rates

The westerly flow aloft will host a transient upper level
disturbance that will cross the northern Rockies and into the
northern Great Plains tonight. This will usher a cold front
southward down the plains, entering NM before dawn Wednesday. Look
for shifting winds with occasional gusts during and immediately
behind the frontal passage into Wednesday morning. Gusts will even
seep into some central valleys as the front accelerates beyond gaps
and canyons within the central mountain chain. Across the eastern
half of NM, high temperatures will run 10 to 20 degrees cooler on
Wednesday, but still at or above seasonal averages for mid November.
The surface winds will settle by the afternoon Wednesday, and this
coupled with the lower mixing heights behind the front will cause
some pockets of poor smoke ventilation/dispersion to linger.

Thursday`s temperatures bounce back 10 to 15 degrees above normal
across the forecast area with breezy (to locally windy across the
Sangre de Cristos) conditions ensuing in the afternoon. At this
time, it appears RH will hover above critical thresholds, but some
localized spaces in northeast NM could briefly meet criteria.

The next trough passage, a deeper system off of the Pacific, will
quickly move toward the Rockies Thursday night into Friday. There is
still some model differences with the exact timing of this feature,
and hence some unknowns exist with timing of stronger wind speeds.
For now it appears the northern mountains of NM will be buffeted
overnight with stout winds before these spread over adjacent
highlands and downstream high plains zones Friday. Again, humidity
appears to be sufficiently high enough to limit the overall critical
fire weather concerns, but the winds alone will be significant. This
trough will send a front into the eastern half of NM Friday night
into Saturday, depending on model preference. It appears that this
will be a precipitation-free frontal passage.

There appears to be consensus that the pattern will remain dry while
warming Sunday into Monday, but extended model forecasts begin to
diverge beyond this.




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