Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Amarillo, TX

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FXUS64 KAMA 182332

Area Forecast Discussion
National Weather Service Amarillo TX
532 PM CST Sun Feb 18 2018

VFR conditions are expected throughout the 00Z TAF period. Winds
will diminish to sustained around 20 kts out of the southwest
before increasing to 25-30 kts gusting to near 40 kts after 16Z
Monday to the end of the TAF period.



.PREV DISCUSSION... /Issued 328 PM CST Sun Feb 18 2018/


Well we continue with the main theme being fire weather concerns.
This includes the rest of this afternoon/early evening and again
tomorrow. There are some signs for moisture in the later periods,
but these chances will remain across eastern to perhaps far eastern
parts of the Panhandles...with the better chances for moisture east
of the forecast area into Oklahoma. We have seen these "dangling
carrots" often and these chances ultimately disappear in the
near-term and short-term periods in subsequent forecast packages.
Lets hope for moisture though.

Looking at tomorrow, there isn`t much of a pressure gradient across
the Panhandles as there was compared to today, but there will be
deep mixing again with dry air in place in the lower levels.
Southwesterly wind speeds should get up to around 25 to 35 mph
with gusts closer to around 45 mph, mainly western portions of
the Panhandles. RH values will be higher than today but still
around the upper teens to 20 percent range. Went ahead and issued
a Fire Weather Watch for Monday. This will encompass the area
with the strongest wind speeds but elevated concerns will
encompass the entire area. A Watch will also give the overnight
shift a chance to refine some details and expand on the threat
area if needed.

Tuesday a cold front is forecast to come through the Panhandles.
There has been some inconsistency with the timing of the front but
generally it has backed off since the last forecast package. This
is another day with high bust potential in temperatures. There
will be a strong gradient across the Panhandles, but the exact
location of this gradient may still change over the course of the
next couple days. Ahead of the front, across mainly
southern/southwestern parts of the Texas Panhandle, there will be
a chance for elevated fire weather with southwesterly wind speeds
around 15 to 25 mph and RH values in the upper teens to low 20
percent range. Will hold off on this mention for now given the
uncertainty of the front and hence the low end probability for
fire weather.

Temperatures will fall behind the cold front with highs only
reaching the 30s Wednesday. We will rebound Thursday with near
normal to above normal temperatures returning by Friday.

The models have given us signs of precipitation in the mid term and
extended periods, but as the forecast package gets closer in time
these chances seem to dwindle often in the day 1 to day 2
timeframe. Am very hesitant to keep precipitation chances in the
forecast at this time given our persistent drought pattern. That
being said, there are small chances across eastern parts of the
forecast area, but overall the better chances are east of the
forecast area. That being said, we could have a variety of
precipitation types between Thursday and Friday, but will hold
off from details for now given the high uncertainty and low
confidence in occurrence.



Critical fire weather continues across portions of the forecast
area today. Red Flag warning goes until 7 PM with elevated fire
weather concerns across portions of the remaining forecast area.

Monday we have another chance for elevated to perhaps critical
fire weather conditions, especially western portions of the
forecast area. Red Flag Threat Index (RFTI) values range from 3
to 4 across much of the forecast area with an area of 5 in western
Cimarron County. Given the strong wind speeds anticipated
tomorrow across the west, went ahead and issued a Fire Weather
Watch for Monday. The 20-foot winds will be around 25 to 30 mph
in this area, and gusts will be as high as 40 to 50 mph at the
surface. RH values are the limiting factor Monday with widespread
upper teens to lower 20 percent across the forecast area. Strong
indications that a Fire Danger Statement will be needed across
the west for at least elevated fire weather concerns, but this
could easily turn into a critical day given the high RFTI values.
The trend of the Dewpoints/RH values over the next 24 hours will
be important. Will give the overnight shift a chance to refine
these details.



.AMA Watches/Warnings/Advisories...
TX...Red Flag Warning until 7 PM CST this evening for the following
     zones: Dallam...Hansford...Hartley...Lipscomb...Moore...

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

OK...Red Flag Warning until 7 PM CST this evening for the following
     zones: Beaver...Cimarron...Texas.

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



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