Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Albuquerque, NM
FXUS65 KABQ 221745 AAB
Area Forecast Discussion...UPDATED
National Weather Service Albuquerque NM
1045 AM MST Sun Jan 22 2017
18Z TAF CYCLE
VFR conditions prevail and are forecast to persist with a couple
exceptions. An approaching trough will lead to increasing
atmospheric moisture and the development/lowering of VFR cigs
through the TAF period. An area of snow is forecast to develop
across northwest New Mexico this evening and overnight and will
likely impact KFMN with MVFR conditions and potential for short-
lived IFR conditions. MVFR cigs are forecast to develop at KGUP
overnight, but snow is expected to remain north. Otherwise,
increasing winds throughout the atmosphere will lead to strong
ridgetop winds Monday and the development of stronger surface
gusts prior to 18z at KLVS and KTCC.
.PREV DISCUSSION...345 AM MST Sun Jan 22 2017...
A brief break today before another round of accumulating snow for
the northern and portions of the western mountains as well as the
northwestern lower elevations beginning later tonight and persisting
into Tuesday morning before tapering off. Occasionally gusty winds
will result in areas of blowing snow as well. While some lower
elevation areas such as the eastern plains and rio grande valley may
warm today and Monday, temperatures overall will then cool to below
average. Drier weather with some lingering northern mountain snow
showers may linger for the rest of the week.
Winds to slowly diminish today as the region is between weather
systems, for a rather brief period. Will allow the wind
advisories/high wind warnings to expire as scheduled, although some
areas such as Clines Corners or KSRR, may be near advisory levels
for a while.
Another round of accumulating snow to begin by later tonight over
some of the north and western high terrain. Snow levels may rise
some on Monday over these areas but will decrease again Monday
night, when the most widespread snow is expected. At the same time,
westerly winds increase, so there may be some areas of blowing snow
to worsen conditions. The Sangre de Cristo mts may fall into this
category as snow amounts may be somewhat marginal for a warning but
any blowing snow impacts might tip the scale to a warning. In any
case, will be posting a winter storm watch starting later tonight
and extending until early Tuesday morning. Still having a battle
with excessive guidance QPF, and trimmed down, but even so another 6
inches to a foot of snow with locally higher amounts for the San
Juan and Chuska mts as well as the Dulce area, is in the realm of
reality given the westerly flow.
High temperatures may warm Monday in the plains and RGV due to
downslope winds but by Tuesday all locales to be colder than
average, which persists through the week. Chances for precipitation
taper off mid to late week but GFS is displaying a bit more
energetic and moist wave/northwest flow, so have some meager pops nw
and Sangre de Cristo mts for now.
Winds across the high terrain early this morning will continue to
slowly diminish through the morning hours, however, breezy to windy
conditions will be felt along and just east of the central mtn chain
this afternoon. Gusts today will not be as strong as yesterday, but
gusts near 35-40 mph will be common, particularly across the central
highlands. Otherwise, temperatures will warm up a few degrees over
yesterdays readings, but clouds associated with the next storm
system will move into the area this afternoon, limiting the warming
potential some. Precipitation will redevelop late this afternoon and
moreso this evening across northwest NM as perturbations in the
upper level flow move into the area. Temperatures should be cold
enough for snow across all areas tonight.
The next main upper level system will arrive on Monday and Monday
night. An associated Pacific front will slide from west to east
across the state, and a band of precipitation is expected to
accompany it. Otherwise, orographic lift will be the main
precipitation driver. The northern mountains, including the Chuskas,
should be favored for quite a bit of snow. Other western and central
areas will see most of the snow from the frontal band, which may
fall apart as it approaches central NM. Strong west to southwest
winds will return both ahead of and behind the front. Widespread
gusts near 40 mph will be common.
Though some snow showers may persist over the high terrain on
Tuesday, the main story of Tuesday will be the winds across the east
central plains. Westerly wind gusts near 50 mph will be possible.
The rest of the week looks to be dry, but remaining cold.
Temperatures Tuesday through the end of the week will remain below
normal. A re-inforcing shot of colder air will arrive on Friday,
though this system will be dry. Starting next week, a pattern shift
may be in store with a strong upper level ridge building over the
Ventilation will be poor across much of northern and western NM
today. Vent rates will improve on Monday and moreso on Tuesday as
winds increase. Thereafter, vent rates will lower through the end of
the week, with much of the western two-thirds of the area seeing
Winter Storm Watch from this evening through late Monday night for
the following zones... NMZ502>504-510>514-516.