Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Caribou, ME

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000 FXUS61 KCAR 301511 AFDCAR AREA FORECAST DISCUSSION NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE CARIBOU ME 1011 AM EST FRI JAN 30 2015 .SYNOPSIS... LOW PRESSURE IN QUEBEC AND NEW YORK STATE WILL RE-DEVELOP IN THE GULF OF MAINE TODAY. THE LOW WILL MOVE TO NEAR THE SOUTHER TIP OF NOVA SCOTIA EARLY SATURDAY MORNING AND SLOWLY MOVE ACROSS THE MARITIMES THIS WEEKEND. HIGH PRESSURE WILL BUILD SLOWLY TOWARD NORTHERN NEW ENGLAND SUNDAY INTO MONDAY. LOW PRESSURE WILL PASS SOUTH OF THE REGION MONDAY. && .NEAR TERM /THROUGH TONIGHT/... 10 AM UPDATE...THE BEST PRESSURE FALLS OVER THE PAST SEVERAL HOURS HAVE BEEN EAST OF CAPE COD TOWARDS THE GULF OF MAINE. LOW PRES HAS MOVED TO THE VICINITY OF CAPE COD. THE UPPER TROF CONTINUES TO DIG SOUTHWARD OVER THE EASTERN US...ALLOWING ATLANTIC MOISTURE TO STREAM NORTHWARD INTO THE FORECAST AREA ON THE CYCLONIC SIDE OF THE UPPER TROUGH. METSAT IMAGERY INDICATES AN INCREASING AREA OF COLD CLOUD TOPS IN RESPONSE TO THE FORCING AND CONVECTIVE ACTIVITY OFF THE CAROLINAS AS THE EXIT AREA OF A STRONG UPPER JET ROUNDS THE BASE OF THE TROUGH. RADAR RETURNS UPSTREAM OF THE FORECAST AREA CONTINUE TO FILL IN AS THE SYSTEM ORGANIZES. ALL OF THIS POINTS TO A FORECAST THAT REMAINS ON TRACK. THE ONLY ADJUSTMENT WAS A SLIGHT REDUCTION IN QPF AND OVERALL SNOWFALL FOR THE STORM BASED ON LATEST GUIDANCE. PREVIOUS DISCUSSION... LOW PRESSURE EXTENDS FROM CENTRAL QUEBEC SOUTH INTO NY STATE EARLY THIS MORNING. THE LOW WILL MOVE EAST AND WEAKEN AS THE ENERGY GETS TRANSFERED TO THE SOUTHERN NEW ENGLAND COAST BY AROUND MIDDAY AS DIFFLUENT FLOW ALOFT DEVELOPS AHEAD OF THE MID AND UPPER LEVEL LOW THAT WILL BE MOVING ACROSS THE EASTERN GREAT LAKES TODAY. AS THE OCEAN LOW DEEPENS THIS AFTERNOON AN INVERTED SFC TROUGH WILL EXTEND FROM THE CENTRAL GULF OF MAINE INTO CENTRAL PORTIONS OF THE CWA. THE LOW WILL CONTINUE TO DEEPEN TONIGHT AT IT LIFTS UP TO THE SOUTHERN TIP OF NOVA SCOTIA BY 12Z SAT. LIGHT SNOW ASSOCIATED WITH THE INCOMING LOW WILL SPREAD FROM WEST TO EAST ACROSS THE CWA THIS MORNING. AS THE OCEAN LOW DEVELOPS AN INVERTED SFC TROUGH WILL PROVIDE THE FOCUS FOR GOOD LOW LEVEL CONVERGENCE AND LIKELY SOME AREAS OF HEAVIER SNOW FROM SOUTHERN PENOBSCOT COUNTY NORTH THROUGH PISCATAQUIS COUNTY. SEVERAL INCHES OF SNOW WILL LIKELY ACCUMULATE IN THESE AREAS THIS AFTERNOON. AMOUNTS WILL BE LESS TO THE EAST TOWARD THE NEW BRUNSWICK BORDER. AS THE LOW WRAPS UP TONIGHT AND BECOMES MORE SYMMETRICAL THE FOCUS WILL QUICKLY SHIFT FROM AN INVERTED SURFACE TROUGH TO A DEFORMATION ZONE THAT WILL SHIFT THE AXIS OF HEAVIER SNOWFALL TOWARD THE NEW BRUNSWICK BORDER. MESO SCALE BANDS ARE EXPECTED TO DEVELOP THAT MAY PRODUCE SOME LOCALLY VERY HEFTY SNOWFALL RATES. AS THE LOW DEEPENS AND THE PRESSURE GRADIENT TIGHTENS AREAS OF BLOWING AND DRIFTING SNOW WILL DEVELOP LATE TONIGHT. THE MAIN UPDATE TO THESE FORECAST PERIODS WAS TO INTRODUCE AREAS OF HEAVY SNOW THIS AFTERNOON INTO TONIGHT. THE QPF AND 6 HOUR SNOWFALL GRIDS WERE ALSO BUMPED UP A BIT ACROSS CENTRAL AND EASTERN PARTS OF THE CWA. && .SHORT TERM /SATURDAY/... SNOWY FOR THE FIRST HALF OF THE WEEKEND...THEN TURNING COLDER. SURFACE LOW PRESSURE WILL BE CENTERED OVER NOVA SCOTIA SATURDAY MORNING WHILE THE UPPER TROUGH WILL BECOME NEGATIVELY TILTED WHILE FORMING A CLOSED LOW. EXPECT A BAND OF MODERATE TO HEAVY SNOW WILL BE ONGOING ACROSS EASTERN MAINE AS MOISTURE WRAPPING AROUND THE SURFACE SYSTEM COMBINES WITH STRONG FORCING ALOFT. SNOWFALL RATES OF 1 TO 2 INCHES PER HOUR WILL BE POSSIBLE, ESPECIALLY DURING THE MORNING HOURS. THE LOW WILL GRADUALLY SHIFT EASTWARD THROUGH THE DAY, ALLOWING THE BEST MOISTURE CONVERGENCE AND DYNAMICS TO EXIT INTO NEW BRUNSWICK BY SATURDAY EVENING. AS SUCH, THE SNOW WILL GRADUALLY LESSEN IN INTENSITY AS IT ENDS FROM WEST TO EAST SATURDAY LATE SATURDAY AFTERNOON AND EVENING. OVERALL, EXPECT SNOWFALL AMOUNTS TO BE IN THE 10 TO 18 INCH RANGE, WITH HIGHER AMOUNTS POSSIBLE WHEREVER THE DEFORMATION BAND SETS UP. THE OTHER CONCERN WITH THIS SYSTEM WILL BE SIGNIFICANT BLOWING AND DRIFTING SNOW. WINDS WILL INCREASE DRAMATICALLY SATURDAY AS THE PRESSURE GRADIENT TIGHTENS IN RESPONSE TO THE DEEPENING LOW AND THE APPROACH OF HIGH PRESSURE TO OUR NORTHWEST. GUSTS TO 35 MPH WILL BE POSSIBLE, AND WITH PLENTY OF NEW LIGHT AND FLUFFY SNOW TO BECOME LOFTED, TRAVEL WILL LIKELY BECOME VERY DIFFICULT DUE TO SNOW-DRIFT- COVERED ROADS AND PERIODS OF NEAR ZERO VISIBILITY. ALTHOUGH THE WINDS WILL LESSEN SOMEWHAT SATURDAY NIGHT, THERE WILL STILL BE ENOUGH FLOW TO KEEP THE THREAT OF BLOWING AND DRIFTING SNOW, ESPECIALLY IN OPEN AREAS. THE AFOREMENTIONED HIGH WILL BRING A MUCH COLDER AIRMASS TO THE REGION. SATURDAY`S HIGHS WILL LIKELY BE EARLY IN THE DAY, ESPECIALLY ACROSS NORTHERN MAINE WHERE TEMPERATURES WILL FALL THROUGH THE SINGLE DIGITS DURING THE AFTERNOON. JUST ABOUT EVERYBODY WILL DROP BELOW ZERO SATURDAY NIGHT, WITH THE EXCEPTION BEING COASTAL AREAS WHICH WILL BARELY STAY ON THE POSITIVE SIDE. THINGS WON`T IMPROVE MUCH ON SUNDAY IN SPITE OF PLENTY OF SUNSHINE. HIGHS WILL TOP OUT AROUND ZERO OVER OUR NORTHERN LOCATIONS, WHILE CENTRAL AND SOUTHERN MAINE WILL SEE HIGHS OF 5 TO 15 DEGREES. HOWEVER, WINDS WILL REMAIN A BIT ON THE BREEZY SIDE BOTH SATURDAY NIGHT AND SUNDAY, WHICH MEANS WIND CHILLS WILL DEFINITELY BE A FACTOR. ADDITIONAL HEADLINES FOR WIND CHILL ADVISORIES WILL LIKELY BE NEEDED FOR THE LATTER HALF OF THE WEEKEND. THIS WIND ALSO MEANS SOME BLOWING SNOW COULD CONTINUE INTO SUNDAY. && .LONG TERM /SATURDAY NIGHT THROUGH THURSDAY/... WE`LL SEE A BITTERLY COLD START TO THE WORK WEEK AS ARCTIC HIGH PRESSURE BUILDS ACROSS THE REGION. MANY AREAS WILL NOT WARM ABOVE ZERO ON MONDAY; EVEN THOSE PLACES THAT DO (MAINLY DOWNEAST) WILL NOT BREAK INTO DOUBLE DIGITS. THE LONGER-RANGE MODELS CONTINUE TO INDICATE THAT THIS HIGH PRESSURE WILL KEEP A STRONG LOW PRESSURE SYSTEM SHUNTED WELL TO OUR SOUTH MONDAY AND MONDAY NIGHT, WITH PERHAPS JUST A BIT OF SNOW BRUSHING THE COAST. MONDAY NIGHT`S LOWS WILL BE VERY COLD, RANGING FROM -10F ALONG THE COAST TO -25F IN THE SAINT JOHN VALLEY. THIS COLD KEEPS HOLD THROUGH TUESDAY NIGHT AS HIGH PRESSURE STRENGTHENS ITS HOLD OVER THE EASTERN UNITED STATES. MODELS THEN BEGIN TO DIVERGE IN THEIR HANDLING OF THE NEXT SYSTEM. A SHARPENING UPPER TROUGH WILL CROSS SOUTHERN CANADA WHILE SURFACE LOW PRESSURE DEVELOPS SOMEWHERE OVER THE MID-ATLANTIC OR SOUTHEAST UNITED STATES. THE MODELS DIFFER SIGNIFICANTLY WITH THE AMOUNT OF PHASING BETWEEN THESE TWO SYSTEMS, AS WELL AS THE TIMING OF A COLD FRONT AND THE TRACK OF THE SURFACE LOW.THE 30/00Z GFS IS MUCH FASTER WITH THE LOW AND BRINGS THE POTENTIAL FOR MORE SIGNIFICANT SNOWFALL TO DOWNEAST MAINE, WHILE THE 30/00Z ECMWF IS MUCH SLOWER WITH THE LOW`S DEVELOPMENT. THIS MEANS THAT THE COLD FRONT WILL HAVE TIME TO MOVE OUT OF CANADA AND OFF THE MAINE COAST, WHICH WOULD KEEP THE LOW PUSHED WELL OUT TO SEA. THIS STORM WILL NEED TO WATCHED CLOSELY UNTIL THE MODELS CAN COME TO BETTER AGREEMENT. && .AVIATION /15Z FRIDAY THROUGH TUESDAY/... NEAR TERM: CONDITIONS HAVE LOWERED TO MVFR EARLY THIS MORNING FROM KHUL SOUTH AND WILL LOWER TO MVFR ACROSS THE REMAINDER OF NORTHERN MAINE THIS MORNING. AS THE SNOW PICKS UP IN INTENSITY THIS AFTERNOON THROUGH TONIGHT EXPECT IFR AND AREAS OF VLIFR. SIGNIFICANT BLOWING AND DRIFTING OF THE SNOW EXPECTED BY SAT MORNING. SHORT TERM: IFR CONDITIONS WILL PREVAIL THROUGH SATURDAY, WITH LIFR POSSIBLE AT TIMES IN HEAVY SNOW. CONDITIONS WILL IMPROVE SOMEWHAT SATURDAY NIGHT AND SUNDAY AS HIGH PRESSURE BUILDS IN, ENDING THE SNOW AND CLEARING SKIES. VFR SHOULD PREVAIL, BUT GUSTY NORTH WINDS WILL KEEP THE THREAT OF BLOWING SNOW AND OCCASIONAL IFR VISIBILITY THROUGH THE WEEKEND. WINDS WILL SUBSIDE ON MONDAY AND TUESDAY, SO VFR IS EXPECTED. THERE IS THE POTENTIAL FOR SOME SNOW IN BHB AND PERHAPS KBGR AND KHUL LATER MONDAY INTO MONDAY NIGHT, WHICH WOULD MEAN THE CHANCE FOR MVFR/IFR CONDITIONS. && .MARINE... NEAR TERM: A GALE WARNING IS IN EFFECT STARTING AT 06Z TONIGHT. SHORT TERM: THE GALE WATCH HAS BEEN UPGRADED TO A GALE WARNING AND IS IN EFFECT FOR SATURDAY THROUGH EARLY SUNDAY MORNING. WINDS WILL INCREASE OUT OF THE NORTH TO NORTHWEST SATURDAY MORNING AS STRENGTHENING LOW PRESSURE CROSSES THE GULF OF MAINE. GUSTS UP TO 45 KT ARE LIKELY, WITH PERHAPS A FEW OCCASIONAL GUSTS UP TO 50 KT. WINDS WILL ABATE SOMEWHAT ON SUNDAY, SO THE GALE WARNING MAY BE ABLE TO EXPIRE THEN. HOWEVER, WINDS OF 20 TO 30 KT WILL STILL BE POSSIBLE THROUGH THE END OF THE WEEKEND, SO A SMALL CRAFT ADVISORY WILL LIKELY BE NEEDED FOR SUNDAY AND SUNDAY NIGHT. && .CLIMATE... SO FAR THIS MONTH A TOTAL OF 31.2" OF SNOW HAS BEEN OBSERVED AT BANGOR...WHICH MAKES IT THE 10TH SNOWIEST JANUARY ON RECORD. THERE IS A HIGH LIKELIHOOD THAT THE STORM AFFECTING THE AREA TODAY INTO SATURDAY WILL MOVE THE MONTHLY TOTAL OVER 40 INCHES AND INTO 3RD PLACE. THERE IS A CHANCE OF BREAKING THE ALL- TIME RECORD OF 48.4" IF 17.3" OF SNOW FALL DURING THE STORM. && .CAR WATCHES/WARNINGS/ADVISORIES... ME...WINTER STORM WARNING UNTIL 10 PM EST SATURDAY FOR MEZ002-005- 006-011-017-030-032. WINTER STORM WARNING UNTIL 4 PM EST SATURDAY FOR MEZ001-003- 004-010-015-016-029-031. MARINE...GALE WARNING FROM 1 AM SATURDAY TO 4 AM EST SUNDAY FOR ANZ050>052. && $$ NEAR TERM...CB/MCW SHORT TERM...HASTINGS LONG TERM...HASTINGS AVIATION...CB/MCW/HASTINGS MARINE...CB/MCW/HASTINGS CLIMATE...

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