Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Grand Junction, CO

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FXUS65 KGJT 131900
AFDGJT

AREA FORECAST DISCUSSION
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE GRAND JUNCTION CO
1200 PM MST SAT FEB 13 2016

.SHORT TERM...(TODAY THROUGH SUNDAY)
ISSUED AT 406 AM MST SAT FEB 13 2016

YESTERDAY THE SURFACE INVERSION WASHED OUT DURING THE DAY
EVERYWHERE BUT GUNNISON. THIS IS OUR BIGGEST CHALLENGE OF TODAY -
WHETHER THE INCOMING JET ALOFT WILL MIX OUT THE GUNNISON BASIN.
THEY REACHED 21 YESTERDAY...BUT TODAY THERE IS POTENTIAL FOR TEMPS
TO CLIMB INTO THE 30S IF THE INVERSION DOES MIX OUT. TOOK A MIDDLE
GROUND IN THE UPPER 20S DUE TO CONSENSUS ON ALL AVAILABLE SKEW T
FORECASTS INDICATING THE BASIN MIXING OUT TODAY WITH THE COOLER
AIR MOVING IN ALOFT...BUT HESITATION SINCE MOS GUIDANCE HAS BEEN
RUNNING ABOUT 15 DEGREES WARMER THAN ACTUAL IN THE BASIN THE LAST
FEW DAYS.

THE TROUGH MARCHING ACROSS IDAHO AND MONTANA TODAY WILL INCREASE
WINDS AND CLOUD COVER ACROSS THE AREA BY LATE THIS AFTERNOON...BUT
NO PRECIPITATION IS EXPECTED UNTIL SUNDAY. A PASSING DISTURBANCE
IN STRONG NORTHWESTERLY FLOW ON SUNDAY WILL BRING SNOW ACROSS THE
WESTERN SLOPE OF NORTH CENTRAL COLORADO...INCLUDING A CHANCE OF
SNOW FROM AREAS NEAR RIFLE AND EAST TO VAIL PASS ALONG I-70.
BLOWING SNOW IS LIKELY ACROSS THE GORE/ELKHEAD/PARK/FLATTOP
RANGES AS A 100 KT JET REMAINS ALOFT DURING THE SNOW EVENT.

.LONG TERM...(SUNDAY NIGHT THROUGH FRIDAY)
ISSUED AT 406 AM MST SAT FEB 13 2016

MOIST NORTHWEST FLOW WILL BE IN PLACE SUNDAY NIGHT THROUGH EARLY
TUESDAY WITH A SERIES OF WEAK PACIFIC WAVES POISED TO PASS THROUGH
THE REGION. BEST MOISTURE AND OROGRAPHIC FORCING WILL REMAIN OVER
OUR NORTHERN AND CENTRAL MOUNTAINS IN WESTERN COLORADO WITH SNOW
SHOWERS LIKELY THROUGH THIS PERIOD. MODELS IN GOOD AGREEMENT WITH
STRENGTHENING H7 FLOW INTO THE 30-40 KT RANGE. MOISTURE PROFILES
CONTINUE TO IMPROVE WITH EACH MODEL RUN WITH SPECIFIC HUMIDITIES
IN THE 3-4 G/KG RANGE AND EVEN HIGHER IN SPOTS. BIGGEST QUESTION
AT THIS POINT WILL BE HOW FAR SOUTH WILL THE BEST FORCING DRIVE
AND TOTAL SNOWFALL AMOUNTS FROM SUNDAY NIGHT THROUGH TUESDAY
MORNING. COULD SEE SOLID ADVISORY LEVEL SNOWFALL ACROSS THE
PARK RANGE NEAR STEAMBOAT SPRINGS...WITH LIGHT AMOUNTS AS WE WORK
SOUTH TO VAIL PASS. CONFIDENCE IS IMPROVING...BUT NOT QUITE TO THE
POINT FOR ISSUING ANY HIGHLIGHTS. AS WE WORK SOUTH...COVERAGE OF
SHOWERS WILL DIMINISH RATHER QUICKLY...ALTHOUGH INCREASED CLOUD
COVER AND CAA ALOFT WILL SWING TEMPS BACK TO MORE NORMAL LEVELS BY
MONDAY.

MOISTURE STARTS ERODING ON TUESDAY AS HEIGHTS REBOUND ACROSS THE
GREAT BASIN WITH RIDGE SLIDING EAST ACROSS THE FORECAST AREA
AROUND MIDWEEK. THIS WILL BRING WARMER WEATHER BACK INTO THE AREA
WITH VALLEY INVERSIONS RETURNING LATE TUESDAY AND WEDNESDAY. NEXT
WAVE IS EXPECTED TO ARRIVE THU/FRI TIMEFRAME...BRINGING ANOTHER
INCREASE IN WIND AND SHOWERS...ESPECIALLY TO THE HIGH COUNTRY.
MODELS HAVE BEEN FLIP FLOPPING A BIT WITH THIS LATE WEEK WAVE AND
WILL JUST INTRODUCE LOW POPS INTO THE LATER PERIOD FOR NOW.

&&

.AVIATION...(FOR THE 18Z TAFS THROUGH 18Z SUNDAY MID DAY)
ISSUED AT 1100 AM MST SAT FEB 13 2016

VFR CONDITIONS DOMINATE THROUGH 12Z. BUT INCREASING NW GRADIENT
WINDS AT AND ABOVE MTN TOP LEVEL WILL INCREASE TURBULENCE AND THE
POSSIBILITY OF LOW LEVEL WIND SHEAR. KVEL IS EXPECTED TO HAVE VSBY
BLO 5SM BETWEEN 09Z-16Z. AFT 12Z SUNDAY MORNING SNOW WILL
INCREASE IN COVERAGE FROM KVEL SE TO VAIL PASS WITH MTNS OCNLY
OBSCD.


&&

.GJT WATCHES/WARNINGS/ADVISORIES...
CO...NONE.
UT...NONE.
&&

$$

SHORT TERM...JAM
LONG TERM...JDC
AVIATION...JOE


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