Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Amarillo, TX

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FXUS64 KAMA 171742

Area Forecast Discussion
National Weather Service Amarillo TX
1142 AM CST Sat Feb 17 2018

For the 18z TAFs...
A generally clear sky is forecast for this afternoon and tonight
with increasing high clouds on Sunday.  Northeast surface winds
will diminish during the afternoon while trending to east and
southeast.  Further veering of surface wind direction to south
and southwest expected this evening and overnight.  Low-level
wind shear may develop before sunrise, particularly at GUY, as
strong low-level jet intensifies.

Tightening pressure gradient, deep mixing and rapidly falling
pressures will lead to southwest surface winds gusting into the 30
to 35 kt range by late morning Sunday.  No visibility
restrictions expected.  VFR forecast continues next 24 hours.



.PREV DISCUSSION... /Issued 554 AM CST Sat Feb 17 2018/

A weak front will bring additional drying to the region with winds
slowly turning clockwise through the day. VFR conditions will
persist with no aviation concerns.

PREV DISCUSSION... /Issued 459 AM CST Sat Feb 17 2018/

Temperatures will be warming up into the 60s today as westerly
flow and warmer air moves over the Panhandles. Winds will be
breezy out of the southwest this morning, then shifting northeast
later today, before turning back to the southeast tonight.
Southwest flow aloft will set up for Sunday and Monday as an upper
level trough over the Pacific Northwest digs down the west coast.
Winds are expected to be in the 20 to 30 mph range with gusts 40
to possibly 50 mph on Sunday and Monday. With temperatures in the
70s this will open the door for Fire Weather issues (See Fire
Weather Discussion).

Next cold front is expected late Monday night into early Tuesday
morning. Timing on this front is still in question, but models
have it very slow moving to possibly stalling over the Panhandles.
This could play havoc for our temperatures on Tuesday afternoon.
Latest guidance suggest that the front will take about 9 hours to
move from the northwest Panhandles, to the southeast Panhandles,
about 2 to 3 times slower than a typical frontal passage with
these Fire Weather patterns.

Colder air will linger over the Panhandles through early Thursday,
before southwest flow returns to the Panhandles. Wednesday will
likely be the coldest day, unless the front on Tuesday speeds up,
and even then if the cold air lingers over the Panhandles, it will
still likely give colder highs on Wednesday. Thursday is set to be
in the 50s as the warmer southwest flow aloft approaches.

By late Thursday into Friday, either a cut-off low or open wave is
expected to set up over the Baja Peninsula, and there is a hint of
moisture that could be transported back over the Panhandles by
early Saturday afternoon. But given our current dry streak and
Saturday being the 8th day of the forecast, we are still currently
dry over the next 7 days.

Strong southwest winds 20 to 30 mph with gusts 40 to 50 mph in
combination with fairly low relative humidities on Sunday will
provide elevated to critical Fire Weather conditions for the
northwest Panhandle area. A Fire Weather Watch is in effect for
Cimarron County as this area is expected to see critical Fire
Weather conditions for several hours. The rest of the northwest
Panhandles are only expected to be elevated.

Monday will be similar to Sunday with temperatures being a tad
cooler for the western Panhandles, but that will keep the relative
humidities up in the upper teens to lower 20 percent range, thusly
only expect elevated criteria on Monday. A cold front passage late
Monday night into early Tuesday could pose problems due to wind
shift if there were to be any ongoing fires.


Well after 126 days the Amarillo Airport finally measured
precipitation. A whole 0.01 of an inch! This happened shortly
after midnight so a trace of precipitation will go down for the
16th of February, with the 0.01" occurring on the 17th. So we
managed to squeeze in an extra day for the record book by a
matter of minutes. But we have dry 7 day forecast in store, so
lets hope we don`t break this record again this year or any time
soon for that matter. Some areas to the southeast picked up
between a tenth and a quarter of an inch, so a little bit of
drought relief for the southeast Panhandles.



VFR conditions will prevail at the Guymon and Dalhart TAF sites
through 06Z Sunday. Mainly VFR conditions at the Amarillo TAF site
except for the possibility for some MVFR ceilings between 06Z and
12Z Sunday. South and southwest winds 10 to 20 knots with some
gusts near 25 knots will become west and northwest 10 to 20 knots
after 12Z to 15Z Saturday. Winds will then become north and
northeast 10 to 20 knots after 17Z to 19Z Saturday and then east
and southeast after 19Z to 21Z Saturday.



.AMA Watches/Warnings/Advisories...
OK...Fire Weather Watch from Sunday afternoon through Sunday evening
     for the following zones: Cimarron.



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