Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Albuquerque, NM

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FXUS65 KABQ 251142
AFDABQ

Area Forecast Discussion
National Weather Service Albuquerque NM
542 AM MDT Thu May 25 2017

.AVIATION...
12Z TAF CYCLE
Strong west southwest surface winds will develop today as an upper
level trough north of NM causes the flow aloft to strengthen. A
surface low will also develop over the TX/OK panhandles causing some
of the strongest winds to develop along the east slopes of the
central mountain chain. It will take a while, but tonight surface
winds will decouple from the strong flow aloft as a low level
temperature inversion develops. Then, winds will become strong again
on Friday; though not quite as strong as today`s winds. Some blowing
dust will be possible this afternoon, especially in dust-prone
locations.

44

&&

.PREV DISCUSSION...329 AM MDT Thu May 25 2017...
.SYNOPSIS...
Remaining dry and very warm through the rest of the work week,
then a more active, unsettled weather pattern as we go through the
holiday weekend. Strong winds today will support a wind advisory for
western and central mountains and highlands and even the ABQ metro
area. less wind and a little cooler Friday, but still breezy to windy
and mostly above normal temperatures. A strong back door cold front
is still expected to move south across the east Saturday and into the
Rio Grande Valley to the Continental divide Saturday night. A big
rise in moisture should follow the front, fueling the development of
showers and thunderstorms, first in the northeast later Saturday and
Saturday night, then spreading west and south Sunday and Memorial
Day. A closed low forming off the CA coast early next week will
weaken as it comes inland, but will direct a consistent flow of
moisture northward into NM Tuesday through at least Thursday.
Widespread showers and thunderstorms are expected during this time.
High temperatures will lower over the weekend and be below normal
next week.

&&

.DISCUSSION...
Upper level ridge axis has quickly shifted east with increasing
southwest flow today. Strong winds will mix down from 500 mb to the
surface this afternoon and evening, resulting in strong winds for
much of the forecast area. Wind advisories will be issued for the
western and central mountains and adjacent highlands, as well as the
middle Rio Grande Valley. Santa Fe, Espanola and Taos will be windy
but probably just short of advisory levels. Highs will remain above
normal, especially on the eastern plains.

The southwest flow will relax just a bit on Friday, allowing winds to
subside some from today`s speeds. But most areas will be breezy to
windy. Highs will remain mostly above normal, although a little lower
than today.

We will start to see a shift in the weather toward a more unsettled
pattern as we go through the holiday weekend. A potent back door cold
front is still slated to drop south into northeast NM late Saturday,
then press south and west Saturday night, and spill into the Rio
Grande Valley early Sunday morning. A big increase in low level
moisture will begin to spark showers and thunderstorms in the
northeast Saturday and Sunday afternoon and evening. The area from
the Continental Divide to the Rio Grande Valley will join the
precipitation train late Sunday into Sunday night. Highs will be
fairly close to normal Saturday and below normal Sunday.

Memorial Day will be the most active day of the holiday weekend with
scattered to numerous showers and thunderstorms, except just isolated
in the far northwest and southeast zones. Highs will remain below
normal.

An upper level low off the CA coast will manage to close off briefly
early next week, while drawing moisture north from its counter
clockwise circulation. The low will weaken as it comes onshore
Tuesday and lifts slowly northeast into NM Wednesday. But there will
be plenty of moisture and instability present for widespread daily
rounds of showers and thunderstorms. Highs will remain cooler than
normal. A trailing weak trough will follow the first system across
the land of Enchantment Thursday keeping things wet and cool.

CHJ

&&

.FIRE WEATHER...

...CRITICAL FIRE WEATHER CONDITIONS MAINLY ACROSS CENTRAL AND
SOUTHERN AREAS TODAY AND FRIDAY...

A critical fire weather pattern will establish today and Friday, as
an upper level trough passing north of New Mexico causes winds aloft
to strengthen and humidities to plummet. There will also be a lee
trough over the eastern plains today. The lee trough will shift
eastward over the Great Plains on Friday, and winds aloft will
weaken some, leading to slightly weaker winds; though they will
still be breezy to windy. Very low humidities and strong surface
winds are expected areawide both days, but the most critical fire
conditions are forecast across central and southern areas, where
soil moisture will generally drop below 25% and the dryness level
will generally be high. Additionally, a broad area of poor humidity
recovery is expected across central and southern parts of the
forecast area tonight. The Northwest Plateau is also included in
today`s Red Flag Warning because of the stronger winds that are
expected there today. Critical conditions should be briefer and less
widespread across the Northwest Plateau on Friday.

Colder air will pour into the area from the northwest and north
Saturday afternoon and night, and winds will weaken as the upper
level trough begins to shift east of the Rockies, easing the fire
weather concern. North winds will become breezy to windy over the
eastern plains Saturday night as a back door cold front plunges
southward.  The front will also bring a chance for showers and
thunderstorms from the Sangre de Cristo Mountains eastward Saturday
afternoon and night. The cold front will probably push into the
central valley with a gusty east canyon wind Saturday night. After
widespread Haines of 6 during the latter half of this week, cooler
and moister air with the front will cause Haines values to trend
downward across central and especially eastern areas Sunday.

Haines will continue to moderate areawide early in the coming work
week as an upper level low pressure system slowly approaches the
upper Baja Peninsula from the west drawing a moist return flow of
low level moisture over New Mexico from the southeast.  An
increasing chance of showers and thunderstorms looks to favor
locations east of the continental divide Sunday and Sunday night,
but storms should be able to spread west of the divide Monday
through the middle of the coming work week. Early indications are
that wetting precipitation will favor the mountains, with smaller
wetting footprints elsewhere.

44

&&

.ABQ WATCHES/WARNINGS/ADVISORIES...
Red Flag Warning from 11 AM this morning to 9 PM MDT this evening
for the following zones... NMZ101-105>109.

Red Flag Warning from 11 AM to 9 PM MDT Friday for the following
zones... NMZ105>109.

Wind Advisory from noon today to 9 PM MDT this evening for the
following zones...
NMZ502-505>508-511>515-519>526-528-529-532-533-539-540.

&&

$$



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