Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Albuquerque, NM

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FXUS65 KABQ 180521 AAB

Area Forecast Discussion...UPDATED
National Weather Service Albuquerque NM
1021 PM MST Wed Jan 17 2018

VFR conditions prevail and are forecast to persist through the TAF
period with mostly light winds.



.PREV DISCUSSION...309 PM MST Wed Jan 17 2018...
A warming trend is on track through Friday, before a storm system
impacts the Land of Enchantment over the weekend. Before the system
arrives, winds will start to ramp up, and critical fire weather
conditions will be possible across portions of the east central
plains Friday afternoon. Temperatures will cool rapidly Saturday and
Saturday night as a Pacific cold front races eastward. Rain and snow
can be expected with the front, and strong winds both ahead of and
behind the front are expected as well. Strong winds will persist on
Sunday, then a quieter period is expected early next week.


A moisture-starved, weakly closed low is shifting south-southeast
across NM and based on visible satellite, is currently centered near
or just west of Socorro. This system will continue to shift southeast
out of our area this evening with no impacts. Clouds should clear
out as mid level dry air moves in behind the system, thus another
chilly night is in store, though not quite as cold as last night for
most. Temperatures will continue to warm up Thursday with ridging
moving overhead.

Flow aloft becomes west-southwest and begins to pick up in speed on
Friday, and the surface low near the NM/CO border will deepen near
1000mb. Thus, should see noticable breezes pick up, especially near
and south of the I-40 corridor in eastern NM.

The next upper level system will be approaching the state Friday
night and Saturday, though overall, the system is trending slower.
Decreased PoPs for Saturday, particularly the eastern extent of them.
Per the GFS, the Pacific front will shift into western NM Saturday
afternoon, thus, expect temps to trend downward during the mid/late
afternoon hours. Any rain would turn to snow, though much of the
precipitation looks to be associated with the front itself, so it may
be rather quick-hitting. The ECMWF is about 6 hours slower than the
GFS, thus bringing the precip in Saturday evening instead. In
addition to the precip, strong winds are expected both ahead of and
behind the front.

The closed low will shift eastward across the NM/CO border Saturday
night into early Sunday, with precipitation gradually ending on
Sunday. The strongest winds of the period may be mid day Sunday, on
the back side of the system, with strong northwest flow. Pending
precipitation the previous day, there may be areas of blowing dust.

Early next work week looks to be quiet, with perhaps another
moisture-starved trough crossing the state around the Tue/Wed



Widespread poor ventilation to persist through Thursday before
improving to fair to good over some of the higher terrain on Friday.
Mostly good to excellent vent rates forecast overall during the

A disturbance tracking over the southwest half of New Mexico this
afternoon will continue to slide southeast this evening and south of
the border after midnight. Clouds associated with the disturbance
will slowly diminish as well. Lows tonight will be a few degrees
warmer for most of the forecast area.

High temperatures Thursday through Friday will warm considerably,
reaching about 10 to 25 degrees above normal on Friday.  A ridge
aloft will be featured Thursday, as surface low pressure strengthens
over eastern New Mexico. This will result in some breezy westerly
winds mainly central and east. Winds increase more on Friday as the
flow aloft becomes more zonal and the surface low over the eastern
plains deepens. A few near record highs might be reached over the
northeast and east central plains Friday afternoon. In addition,
forecast moderate to high Haines, minimum humidities of 10 to 15
percent and sustained winds of 20 mph or greater lead to potential
for an area of critical fire weather conditions covering the
majority of Zone 108 Friday afternoon. Therefore have reissued the
fire weather watch.

The approaching storm system may be slower to reach New Mexico on
Saturday, therefore temperatures would remain well above average in
the east, and precipitation would be limited to the west. Winds will
increase further Saturday as well, with the possibility of some
critical conditions redeveloping over the northeast and east central
plains. Winds will stay strong over the higher terrain Saturday
night, and shift to the west and northwest on Sunday when cooler air
rushes into the region and the upper low moves east of the state. If
the models are correct, some locales will see the strongest winds
Sunday. Any wetting precipitation from this system looks to favor
the higher terrain of the west and central. Dry and warmer next
Monday with diminished winds. Another more windy than wet trough
possible around the middle of next week.


Fire Weather Watch Friday afternoon for the following zones...



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