Area Forecast Discussion
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FXUS61 KRLX 230000
Area Forecast Discussion
National Weather Service Charleston WV
700 PM EST Wed Feb 22 2017
Unseasonably warm weather returns again Thursday and Friday.
A strong cold front crosses first thing Saturday morning,
followed by cooler weather for the weekend.
.NEAR TERM /THROUGH THURSDAY/...
As of 645 PM Wednesday...
Much of the shower activity has pushed east of the area at this
hour. In its wake are lingering pesky low stratus clouds. As
the low level flow turns more SW tonight, expect improvement
in cloud bases. However...the fog versus cloud battle will make
for a low confidence forecast tonight. Given the wet
grounds...low dewpoint depression...and weak flow initially,
suspect areas of dense fog will form in any breaks in cloud
cover. This is rather difficult to pin down in the grids,
though, given the lack of definitive clearing across the area.
The low level flow does strengthen a bit toward morning along
with the potential for weakly forced showers to break out along
and W of the Ohio River with lowering cloud bases once again.
As of 3 PM Wednesday...
Wave was quickly exiting the area this afternoon, taking the
last of the rain with it. Stratocu is likely to linger tonight,
limiting fog formation but still do expect some.
Thursday will bring a continuation of south to southwest flow
with low level moisture remaining in place. Heating is forecast
to increase CAPE to 500-700 J/KG. This, along with weak shear,
could give rise ton a few thunderstorms as a weak upper level
short wave trough crosses in west to southwest flow, but nothing
organized is expected.
Temperatures close to a blend MET/MAV and bias corrected
.SHORT TERM /THURSDAY NIGHT THROUGH SATURDAY/...
As of 310 PM Wednesday...
Models continue to slow down frontal passage. Latest ECMWF and
NAM guidance having the front near the Ohio River by 12Z
Saturday and the GFS continues to bisect WV with the front by
that time. I have held off on PoP until a few hours later than
previous forecast, with Categorical PoP in the Ohio Valley
between 6Z - 7Z, but this may still be a bit early.
The main concern with this front will be the possibility of
isolated damaging wind gusts in convection. Overall,
instability is rather weak, with NAM and GFS indicating anywhere
from 300 to 600 J/Kg of CAPE with the highest values in the
Ohio Valley. However, wind shear values are very impressive with
65 to 70 knots of 0 - 6km bulk shear. Also, upper trough turns
slightly negative as it crosses the region and 700mb to 500mb
lapse rates increase to 8C/km. It is possible that we could see
a weakening QLCS entering the Ohio Valley by early Saturday
morning. With the impressive wind shear and modest instability
in the Ohio Valley, there is a chance that convection could
bring some strong wind gusts down to the surface. With the
overnight timing of the front though, the threat for damaging
winds will be low, but isolated damage and power outages will be
possible in the Ohio Valley and that threat will decrease
heading east across West Virginia.
The cold front clears the area on Saturday and strong cold air
advection pushes in behind it. There may be enough lingering
moisture with the upslope NW flow behind the front that the
mountains squeeze out a few snow showers.
.LONG TERM /SATURDAY NIGHT THROUGH WEDNESDAY/...
As of 315 PM Wednesday...
Start off the long term with high pressure over the region, but
this will be short lived as zonal pattern is set up across the
U.S. Guidance is in a little better agreement with southern
stream wave pushing across the area on Monday. This will be the
first of what looks like several systems moving through the
progressive pattern next week.
.AVIATION /00Z THURSDAY THROUGH MONDAY/...
As of 645 PM Wednesday...
A low confidence aviation forecast tonight given the battle
waging between stratus and fog formation. I feel fairly
confident on CIGS improving as the evening progresses given the
low level flow turning more southwesterly. Given the amount of
low level moisture in place combined with low dewpoint
depressions and a wet ground...any place could fog pretty
quickly this evening if there are any substantial breaks in the
clouds. I`ve allowed for some IFR vsby in fog to develop where
some breaks in the clouds are more likely to occur, from HTS-
CRW-EKN. Some weakly forced showers may develop toward morning
along and west of the Ohio River which will bring CIGS down once
again into MVFR and possibly IFR across southeast Ohio through
15Z. These showers will tend to lift northeast as the day
progresses, however, chances are too small to include in TAFs
attm. Otherwise expect some 3 to 4 thousand foot stratocu across
the area through the afternoon.
Surface flow will be light south beneath light to moderate
FORECAST CONFIDENCE AND ALTERNATE SCENARIOS THROUGH 00Z FRIDAY...
FORECAST CONFIDENCE: Low tonight. Medium for Thursday.
ALTERNATE SCENARIOS: Dense fog may be more prevalent should
clouds break more than forecast.
EXPERIMENTAL TABLE OF FLIGHT CATEGORY OBJECTIVELY SHOWS CONSISTENCY
OF WFO FORECAST TO AVAILABLE MODEL INFORMATION:
H = HIGH: TAF CONSISTENT WITH ALL MODELS OR ALL BUT ONE MODEL.
M = MEDIUM: TAF HAS VARYING LEVEL OF CONSISTENCY WITH MODELS.
L = LOW: TAF INCONSISTENT WITH ALL MODELS OR ALL BUT ONE MODEL.
UTC 1HRLY 00 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11
EST 1HRLY 19 20 21 22 23 00 01 02 03 04 05 06
CRW CONSISTENCY H M M M M M M L L L L L
HTS CONSISTENCY H M M L L L L L L L L M
BKW CONSISTENCY M M M M H M M M M M M L
EKN CONSISTENCY H H H H H H H M L L L L
PKB CONSISTENCY H H H H H H H M M M M L
CKB CONSISTENCY H H H H H H M M M M H L
AFTER 00Z FRIDAY...
No widespread IFR conditions are expected at this time.