Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Buffalo, NY

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000 FXUS61 KBUF 261505 AFDBUF Area Forecast Discussion National Weather Service Buffalo NY 1005 AM EST Sun Feb 26 2017 .SYNOPSIS... Lake effect snow east of the lakes will end today as a weak ridge of high pressure builds into the area. Mainly dry weather will then continue through Monday before a warm front brings a few rain showers on Tuesday. An area of low pressure will then move through the Great Lakes Wednesday with another period of rain and gusty winds. Temperatures will warm to well above normal again by Wednesday before winter cold returns late in the week. && .NEAR TERM /THROUGH TONIGHT/...
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Late this morning, radar shows lake effect snow showers lifting northward as the flow becomes more westerly. Mesoscale guidance, including the RGEM show a brief consolation of the band southeast of Lake Ontario centered on Northern Cayuga county. This will be brief, with winds continuing to shift to the southwest by this afternoon. Even so, a narrow band may produce localized snowfall amounts of 2 to 4 inches through early afternoon before lifting northward and weakening with lowering equilibrium levels. This is supported by mesoscale guidance and confirmed by upstream radar trends. Otherwise, lake effect snow showers are disorganized, with a surface ridge forecast to build in quickly from the west. Elsewhere, expect additional accumulation today to be less than an inch. Morning clouds should give way to some sunshine this afternoon as low level moisture diminishes. Temperatures will be near normal for late February, with mid 30s on the lake plains and around 30 on the hills. Tonight a weak warm front will move from southwest to northeast across the area. Sparse low level moisture should keep most of the area dry, with the warm front producing a brief period of mid level cloud cover. Skies will then partially clear overnight in the wake of the warm front, with the exception of the eastern Lake Ontario region where more cloud cover will remain. Lows will occur early this evening, with lower 30s on the lake plains and mid 20s across interior areas. Temperatures will then begin to warm overnight under weak warm advection and increasing winds. It will become quite windy overnight as a 50+ knot low level jet crosses the area. Expect gusts to reach 40-45 mph northeast of Lakes Erie and Ontario with channeling down the lakes, and 30-35 mph farther inland. Winds aloft could support advisory criteria wind gusts northeast of the lakes, but weak warm advection and poor low level lapse rates will likely inhibit full mixing.
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&& .SHORT TERM /MONDAY THROUGH WEDNESDAY NIGHT/... Monday and Monday night will feature mainly tranquil weather and will mark the beginning of a warming trend through mid-week. On Monday morning, a shortwave exiting into Quebec will push a very weak cold front through the North Country. Moisture and forcing will be very limited, but with some orographic lift, have included a low chance PoP over the Tug Hill and western Adirondacks. Otherwise, a secondary weak shortwave passing to our south later in the day Monday may bring a few isolated showers to the southern Tier. Otherwise, expect a mainly dry day with some cloud cover and temperatures recovering into the low to mid 40s across the region with the help of weak warm air advection. The moderating trend will continue Tuesday into Wednesday, but this will also bring rain and a chance of thunderstorms back to the region for mid-week. Broad troughing carving out across the western CONUS will help build warmth across the eastern CONUS and sharpening the temperature gradient along a line from the central plains to the Great Lakes. A surface low will develop and track just west of the forecast area, strengthening with time as it tracks into southern Quebec / northern New England by Thursday morning. Warm advection, along with a shortwave along the frontal boundary ahead of the main low, will bring some shower chances to the region as early as Tuesday, with a slight chance of some thunder. Temperatures will also rise back into the 50s across western NY and the upper 40s across the North Country. Continued warm advection Tuesday night with the surface low deepening just to our west should place us in the warm sector Tuesday night into Wednesday morning. Thus have temperatures maintaining or even warming some overnight into Wednesday. Temperatures could top out in the low 60s for some on Wednesday. However, shower and thunderstorm chances will increase across the region as well as the cold front will cross the area from west to east Wednesday into Wednesday night. The strongly forced low cape / high shear environment could even produce some stronger thunderstorms with gusty winds. There remain some differences between the GFS/EC with regard to surface low strength/track, but there remains some potential a change over to snow from west to east Wednesday night before precipitation ends. Also depending on the track/strength of the low, strong winds are possible in the wake of the cold frontal passage. && .LONG TERM /THURSDAY THROUGH SATURDAY/... Winter conditions will return for the end of week into the weekend as a deep progressive trough brings a surge of colder air across the northeast CONUS. 850 mb temperatures will fall into the negative teens celsius later Thursday and Friday, which will keep daytime highs below freezing in many locations Thursday into Saturday. Nighttime lows will fall into the 20s, and even teens to single digits by Friday night as 850 mb temps could fall to -20C or colder. Lake effect snow chances will also increase with this colder air spilling across the largely ice-free lower Great Lakes. The best chance for accumulating lake effect snows appears to come Thursday night into Friday for favored west-northwest flow locations. && .AVIATION /15Z SUNDAY THROUGH THURSDAY/...
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Conditions will vary through mid-afternoon with mainly VFR conditions but areas of IFR or lower in lake effect snow showers. For the most part, lake effect snow showers will not be at TAF sites, but these may impact BUF/IAG/ROC/JHW at times. VFR will then prevail later this afternoon and tonight. A weak warm front will cross the area from west to east tonight with a period of mid level clouds. Winds will remain on the stronger side, with gusts to around 25 knots today. Winds will increase again tonight after a brief lull early this evening, with gusts to 35 knots northeast of the lakes overnight. Outlook... Monday...Mainly VFR, possible MVFR with chance of -SHRA/-SHSN east of Lake Ontario. Tuesday...VFR/MVFR with a chance of showers. Wednesday...MVFR/IFR with periods of rain. Thursday...Mainly VFR. A chance of snow showers.
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&& .MARINE... A strong pressure gradient between high pressure centered over the southeast states and low pressure over the Canadian Maritimes will maintain moderate to strong winds on the Lower Great Lakes through Monday morning with higher end Small Craft Advisory conditions. Winds will diminish Monday afternoon as a ridge of high pressure briefly builds into the Lower Great Lakes. Stronger winds will return Wednesday night and Thursday in the wake of a deepening storm over Quebec. && .HYDROLOGY... flood warnings remain in effect for the Eastern Lake Ontario region for the Black River from a combination of rapid snowmelt and heavy rainfall from Saturday. The Black River at Boonville will continue to rise today and crest this afternoon in minor flood before falling on Monday. The lower reaches of the Black River at Watertown and in northern Lewis County responds much more slowly. The river will continue to rise through at least Tuesday reaching at least minor flood stage, with moderate flood stage a possibility. The river will not likely drop below flood stage until late week. Elsewhere across the eastern Lake Ontario region, a flood watch remains in effect today. Other smaller streams and rivers which drain the Tug Hill and western Adirondacks will continue to run high today and may result in minor flooding. && .BUF WATCHES/WARNINGS/ADVISORIES...
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NY...Flood Watch until 7 PM EST this evening for NYZ006>008. MARINE...Small Craft Advisory until 1 PM EST Monday for LEZ040-041. Small Craft Advisory until 7 AM EST Monday for LEZ020. Small Craft Advisory until 4 PM EST Monday for LOZ043>045. Small Craft Advisory until 1 PM EST Monday for LOZ042.
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&& $$ SYNOPSIS...HITCHCOCK NEAR TERM...APFFEL/HITCHCOCK SHORT TERM...CHURCH LONG TERM...CHURCH AVIATION...APFFEL/HITCHCOCK MARINE...HITCHCOCK HYDROLOGY...HITCHCOCK

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