Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Amarillo, TX

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FXUS64 KAMA 190426

Area Forecast Discussion
National Weather Service Amarillo TX
1026 PM CST Thu Jan 18 2018

VFR conditions to prevail throughout the 06Z TAF issuance. Light
overnight winds will slowly return out of the south-southwest
by midday tomorrow. Wind speeds are also expected to increase to
around 15kt during this timeframe. After sunset, winds will become
light and shift more out of the west.


.PREV DISCUSSION... /Issued 440 PM CST Thu Jan 18 2018/

Warmer air continues to displace the cold arctic air that kept
highs 15 to 20 degrees below normal on Monday and Tuesday. Now
that a Pacific Northwest low will be digging down the western
CONUS with strong southerly flow ahead, we will be looking at
temperatures 15 to 20 degrees above normal Friday and Saturday,
breezy winds will make for possible Fire Weather threats (See Fire
Weather Discussion). The cold front behind this low has backed
off on timing, and now what looked to be a chilly Sunday with a
Saturday night cold frontal passage, has now transitioned to a
mild yet very windy Sunday, and potential Fire Weather Day (See
Fire Weather Discussion). Guidance has come up quite a bit on
winds and we could be looking at Advisory, and perhaps High Wind
Warning wind speeds/gusts. Right now will hold off on any wind
highlights as it`s still 3 days out, and the models have recently
slowed this system down.

The cold front looks to start across the northwest Panhandles
around noon, and track southeast through the day, and should be
out of the far southeast by 6pm. Most of the southern Panhandles
should see the wind shift out of the north around mid afternoon.
Still a chance of rain snow mix across Cimarron County on Sunday
afternoon, as what little wrap around moisture on the back side of
the low clips the OK Panhandle.

Cold front quickly exits the area Sunday night, with zonal flow
dominating the southern CONUS, and near normal temperatures return.
Other than weak fast moving fronts, the temperatures will not
fluctuate much across the Panhandle through midweek. Looks like
there will be warming trend towards the end of next week, when the
next low digs down the western CONUS bringing warmer
temperatures, and again possible Fire Weather (See Fire Weather


Several Fire Weather Watches continue, along with new additions
for Sunday.

Elevated to marginally critical fire weather conditions are in
store for mainly the southwest and south central Texas Panhandle
Friday afternoon and then across the western Oklahoma Panhandle and
the western and south central Texas Panhandle Saturday afternoon.
The concern is still the 20ft winds, and if they will materialize.

ERC values on Wednesday have risen into the mid 50s at the Cedar
and Wheeler RAWS stations with 50 at the Bootleg RAWS station.
With mostly sunny skies and continued dry conditions along with
the increased southwesterly 20 foot winds, these values should
continue to rise into the upper 50s to near 60 and could possibly
approach the 90th percentile by Saturday which is in the low 60s.
High temperatures are still forecast to be 20-25 degrees above
normal. The Fire Weather Watch continues for these reasons.

A new Fire Weather Watch is now in play for Sunday. This is more
of an impact based watch as the slow down of the cold front and
the warm day on Saturday, will allow for daytime mixing to occur
as early as 9 am Sunday. With a strong 50 to 60kt jet not far off
the surface, it will not take much time for strong wind gusts in
excess of 40 mph to reach the surface. The southern and eastern
Panhandles may stay warm and dry enough to get into the critical.
And with Fire Weather Watches going on Friday and Saturday, any
ongoing fires could be impacted by Sunday`s winds, and marginal
relative humidities.

RFTI`s Panhandle wide are currently set at a 3 and 4 for Sunday,
and current winds may not be strong enough, especially over the
south. Depending on the track of the low, the winds across the OK
Panhandle could be overdone.

As far as the end of next week, the potential for another system
to impact the high plains is currently in play, but there is too
much going on in the near term to go into detail. Will continue to
address this system as we move toward the start of the work week,
and have finished with this weekends Fire Weather Threats.



.AMA Watches/Warnings/Advisories...
TX...Fire Weather Watch from Sunday morning through Sunday afternoon
     for the following zones: Armstrong...Carson...
     Collingsworth...Deaf Smith...Donley...Gray...Hemphill...

     Fire Weather Watch from Saturday afternoon through Saturday
     evening for the following zones: Dallam...Deaf Smith...

     Fire Weather Watch from Friday afternoon through Friday evening
     for the following zones: Deaf Smith...Oldham...Potter...

OK...Fire Weather Watch from Saturday afternoon through Saturday
     evening for the following zones: Cimarron.



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