Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Glasgow, MT

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FXUS65 KGGW 251026

Area Forecast Discussion
National Weather Service Glasgow MT
326 AM MST Sun Feb 25 2018

A couple of challenges are worth monitoring to in the short term
forecast as the next upper level disturbance set to roll through
the region today into Monday with the trough starting to flatten
shortly thereafter.

As this feature approaches today, much of the precipitation is
expected to remain well to the south and west of the forecast
area. A stray snow shower cannot be ruled out, but the larger
challenge will be determining the wind speeds that mix down to the
surface. Some of the individual mesoscale guidance show winds a
little higher than consensus blends, particularly over complex
terrain for today. For now, went a little above consensus given
the proximity to the upper level disturbance which may help mix
down some of the stronger wind gusts, but stayed below the
strongest solutions. The combination of gusty winds and loose snow
cover may lead to some drifting and blowing snow, particularly
over the Little Rockies. In fact, it may not be all that different
from what occurred yesterday. Given the wind direction largely
from the west to southwest, most impacts would occur along north
to south oriented roads.

Any snow melt that occurs today may also refreeze tonight adding
to potential impacts. While blowing and drifting conditions may
be isolated in nature, it will be dependent on the precise wind
gusts that are realized, something that the next shift will have
to keep a close eye on. Higher wind gusts would lead to greater
impacts to the area while lower wind gusts would mean little if
any impacts. For now, anyone with travel plans should allow a
little extra time in case blowing and/or drifting snow is
encountered, and monitor the latest forecast for any changes.

Models show a little flattening of the northern branch of the
upper trough briefly on Tuesday with some redevelopment over
Montana on Wednesday. This will translate to mainly dry weather,
though continued colder than average temperatures. Still, it will
feel like an improvement from the recent Arctic conditions that
have been experienced over the region. Beyond the midweek, the
forecast was trended toward latest consensus model blends,
capturing the idea of continued temperatures near to slightly
below normal. Some indications exist in longer range models of a
vertically stacked low pressure system potentially affecting the
region sometime in early March, though details are limited for now
since this is at such large time scales. This could be the next
period of interest however, worth keeping an eye on over the
longer term. Maliawco


Mainly VFR conditions are expected today. West to southwest winds
of 10 to 20 kts with occasional higher gusts are expected through
the period. Maliawco




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