Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Flagstaff, AZ

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000
FXUS65 KFGZ 271658
AFDFGZ

AREA FORECAST DISCUSSION
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE FLAGSTAFF AZ
958 AM MST FRI FEB 27 2015

.SYNOPSIS...
A STRONG PACIFIC STORM SYSTEM WILL BRING PERIODS OF RAIN AND SNOW TO
NORTHERN ARIZONA TODAY THROUGH TUESDAY OR WEDNESDAY OF NEXT WEEK.

&&

.UPDATE...
ONLY A FEW MINOR CHANGES WERE MADE TO EXPAND THE AREA OF SLIGHT
CHANCES FOR SHOWERS SOUTHWARD A BIT. NO FURTHER CHANGES ARE
ANTICIPATED IN THE SHORT TERM AT THIS TIME.

&&

.PREVIOUS DISCUSSION /430 AM MST/...
A STRONG AND MOIST PACIFIC STORM SYSTEM WILL MOVE ACROSS NORTHERN
ARIZONA STARTING TODAY AND LASTING INTO TUESDAY OR WEDNESDAY OF NEXT
WEEK. WIDESPREAD RAIN AND AREAS OF MOUNTAINS SNOW ARE
ANTICIPATED...HEAVY AT TIMES FROM THE DAY SUNDAY THROUGH MONDAY.

FOR TODAY...THE WEATHER WILL BEGIN TO GET INTERESTING AS A LOW
PRESSURE SYSTEM DROPS SOUTH ALONG THE WEST COAST. A WEAK DISTURBANCE
EMBEDDED WITHIN THIS GENERAL FLOW WILL MOVE ACROSS NORTHERN ARIZONA
TODAY. UPWARD MOTION ASSOCIATED WITH THIS DISTURBANCE WILL INTERACT
WITH EXISTING MOISTURE FOR A CHANCE OF RAIN AND SNOW SHOWERS...
ESPECIALLY ACROSS THE FOUR CORNERS AREA. AN INCH OR TWO OF SNOW
ACCUMULATION WILL BE POSSIBLE FROM THE KAIBAB PLATEAU EASTWARD TO
BLACK MESA AND THE CHUSKA MOUNTAINS AT ELEVATIONS ABOVE 6000 FEET.
COULD EVEN SEE SOME ACCUMULATION OVER THE SAN FRANCISCO PEAKS.

FOR THE REMAINDER OF THE PERIOD...THE TRACK OF THIS SYSTEM WILL
ALLOW IT TO DRAW GOOD PACIFIC MOISTURE INTO ARIZONA. A COLD FRONT
AND WIDESPREAD LARGE SCALE UPWARD MOTION WILL SLOWLY MOVE FROM WEST
TO EAST ACROSS THE AREA. IN ADDITION, STRONG WINDS INTERACTING WITH
THE REGIONS HIGHER TERRAIN WILL RESULT UPSLOPE FLOW CAPABLE OF
CAUSING PERIODS OF LOCALLY HEAVY RAIN AND SNOW ESPECIALLY OVER SOUTH
AND SOUTHWEST FACING SLOPES. SATURDAY, BEFORE THE BEST LARGE SCALE
UPWARD MOTION DEVELOPS, THE HEAVIEST SHOWER ACTIVITY WILL BE MAINLY
CONFINED TO THE HIGHER TERRAIN WHERE UPSLOPE FLOW IS FAVORED. BUT
FROM SUNDAY INTO MONDAY, AS WIDESPREAD STORM SCALE UPWARD MOTION
DEVELOPS, RAIN AND SNOW SHOWERS WILL SPREAD ACROSS THE ENTIRE AREA
WITH THE HEAVIEST PRECIPITATION SUNDAY NIGHT INTO MONDAY. EXPECT
WINDY CONDITIONS EACH DAY THROUGH MONDAY...WITH THE STRONGEST WINDS
EXPECTED ON SATURDAY WHEN GUSTS MAY EXCEED 40 MPH IN SOME PLACES.

IN TERMS OF PRECIPITATION...1-4 INCHES OF RAINFALL WILL BE POSSIBLE
OVER THE MOGOLLON RIM, WHITE MOUNTAINS, NORTHERN GILA COUNTY AND
PORTIONS OF YAVAPAI COUNTY. THESE AREAS WILL NEED TO BE MONITORED
CLOSELY AS FLOODING IS POSSIBLE. ELSEWHERE, 0.50 TO 1.75 INCHES WILL
BE POSSIBLE. SNOW LEVELS ARE FORECAST TO RANGE FROM 5000-6000 FEET
OVER THE KAIBAB PLATEAU AND BLACK MESA....6500-7500 FEET AROUND
FLAGSTAFF...AND 7000-8000 FEET IN THE EASTERN MOGOLLON RIM, CHUSKA
AND WHITE MOUNTAINS. CURRENT FORECASTS SHOW BETWEEN 1 TO 2 FEET OF
SNOW FOR MANY LOCATIONS ABOVE 7000 FEET. BELOW 7000
FEET...UNCERTAINTY GROWS CONSIDERABLY AS SNOW LEVELS STILL REMAIN
QUITE VARIABLE BETWEEN MODEL SOLUTIONS. EXPLORE
WEATHER.GOV/FLAGSTAFF FOR MORE DETAILS.

TUESDAY INTO THURSDAY....THE GFS GENERALLY HAS SHOWER ACTIVITY
MOVING OUT OF THE AREA ON TUESDAY WITH THE EUROPEAN MODEL SWINGING
ANOTHER DISTURBANCE ACROSS NORTHERN ARIZONA FOR ADDITIONAL RAIN AND
SNOW SHOWERS LASTING INTO WEDNESDAY. WE`LL JUST HAVE TO WAIT ON THAT
DETAIL. FOR NOW THEIR IS PLENTY TO FOCUS ON FROM NOW THROUGH MONDAY.

TRAVEL IN THE HIGH COUNTY WILL BE DANGEROUS THIS WEEKEND DUE TO
ICY ROADWAYS AND VERY LOW VISIBILITY. PROBABLY A GOOD IDEA TO
GET YOUR WINTER TRAVEL KIT REPLENISHED...AND MAKE SURE THE
CAR/TRUCK HAS A FULL TANK OF GAS.

&&

.AVIATION...
FOR THE 18Z PACKAGE...EXPECT INCREASING CHANCES AND COVERAGE OF
SHSN/SHRA THROUGH THE PERIOD...ESPECIALLY ALONG AND NORTH OF I-40 TO
NEAR THE UT BORDER THRU 06Z SATURDAY...THEN EXPANDING SOUTHWARD
ALONG THE MOGOLLON RIM...MTNS OF YAVAPAI AND N GILA COUNTIES. SHOWER
ACTIVITY WILL INITIALLY PRODUCE LOCALIZED MVFR/IFR CONDITIONS UP
THRU 06Z...THEN BECMG MORE WIDE SPREAD MVFR/IFR/LIFR IN SHRA/SHSN.
DAYTIME SFC WINDS SW10-20G20-30KTS MOST AREAS...THEN SW5-15G25KTS IN
MORE LCL DOWN WIND FROM HIGH TERRAIN FEATURES OVERNIGHT. AVIATION
DISCUSSION NOT UPDATED FOR TAF AMENDMENTS.

&&

.FGZ WATCHES/WARNINGS/ADVISORIES...NONE.

&&

$$

PUBLIC.........RR/MCCOLLUM
AVIATION.......TC

FOR NORTHERN ARIZONA WEATHER INFORMATION VISIT
WEATHER.GOV/FLAGSTAFF





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