Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Pueblo, CO
FXUS65 KPUB 261733
Area Forecast Discussion
National Weather Service Pueblo CO
1133 AM MDT Sun Mar 26 2017
Issued at 1051 AM MDT Sun Mar 26 2017
Forecast generally on track. Updated to pull pops away from the
southeast mountains as the fragmented deformation band on the west
side of the upper low continues to pull eastward. Snow levels
still appear to stay around 8500 feet today. Had 7.5 inches of
snow reported near Rosita earlier, and with heavy wet spring
nature to the snows, spotty amounts in the 6-8 inch range will
certainly be possible. This will be most likely along the
southern Sangres where bands of quick moving snow showers will
continue for the next hour. Web cams in CDOT have shown mainly wet
roads at La Veta and near Cuchara suggesting minimal impacts to
travel. Given spotty nature to these heavier snow amounts have
refrained from issuing any Winter Weather Advisories.
Precipitation will fall as rain across the plains...though pops
will tail back to scattered as the band falls apart as it
translates eastward across the plains. -KT
.SHORT TERM...(Today and tonight)
Issued at 353 AM MDT Sun Mar 26 2017
...Quick moving system brings showers to the area Today...
Current water vapor imagery and upper air analysis indicating a
broad upper trough translating across the Rockies, with satellite
data indicating a distinct vort max spinning across the South
Central Colorado and North Central New Mexico border at this time.
Satellite and KPUX radar data is also indicating an enhanced cloud
shield and scattered showers associated with said vort max lifting
out the across the Southeast Mountains and mid Arkansas River Valley
at this time.
Today-Tonight...Latest models in good agreement of the broad upper
trough continuing to lift out across the state with the embedded
vort max moving east across the southern Colorado border through
late morning before moving into southwest Kansas by late this
afternoon. Movement of this system will keep best precipitation
chances across the Southeast Mountains and Southern I-25 Corridor
where enhanced upslope will be realized with developing north to
northeast winds of 15 to 25 mph as the system continues to move
east. The quick movement and relatively warm temperatures associated
with the system will limit snow accumulations, with 1 to 4 inches
possible across the Sangre de Cristo and Wet Mountains and Wet
Mountains Valley through the afternoon. Cant rule out a few inches
across the Mid Arkansas River Valley and into the Pikes Peak region
through the early morning hours, with precipitation winding down
through the mid morning and early afternoon with subsidence behind
the parting system. Further east, cant rule out a few thunderstorms
across the far Southeast Plains this afternoon with precipitation
chances diminishing through the early evening with developing
subsidence. Temperatures look to be at or slightly cooler than
seasonal averages through tonight with highs in the 50s across the
lower elevations and mainly 30s and 40s across the higher terrain.
Overnight lows to be generally in the 20s and 30s.
.LONG TERM...(Monday through Saturday)
Issued at 353 AM MDT Sun Mar 26 2017
A couple of significant storms will affect the region during this
period. The first will move across the area TUE-WED and the 2nd will
move across during the FRI-early SUN time period. Confidence is high
that these two storms will occur, but specific track of both storms
is still in question (how far south will they track?). Both storms
are not all that cold, so I anticipate these weather systems will
bring mainly rain to the lower elevations and snows to the
mountains. Still way to early to get specific regarding where the
rain/snow line will be.
Most of this day will be dry as a quick moving short wave ridge
translates across the state. Showers will move into the contdvd
region late in the day, with the shower activity increasing as the
Tuesday and Wednesday...
All guidance shows a closed low moving east across New Mexico
during this time frame. The differences in the data are the exact
path of the 500 mb low, as the EC is the farthest south (over ec
NM) while the GFS is farthest north (over nc NM). The EC solution
would favor areas along and south of US 50 with the best chance
of precip while the GFS favors all of the forecast area. The NAM
and Canadian are somewhere in between. In either case, all of the
forecast area will see precip. For now leaned a bit more towards
the EC solution and have overall highest POPs/QPF favoring the
southern sections of the fcst area. HPC has also favored the
southern half of our fcst area in their QPF progs for this event.
There is likely going to be quite a bit of QPF, especially on the
east facing slopes of the mtns/plains interface, especially from the
Wet Mtns southward. A couple of inches of liquid is not out of the
question, and winter weather highlights are likely going to be
needed starting Tuesday afternoon and lasting into Wednesday.
At this time, this storm does not appear to be a damaging wind maker
like the storm on Friday, but it will be blustery on the plains.
This storm will likely produce much more widespread beneficial
precip that Fridays system.
Although it will snow (and heavy wet snow at that) at higher
elevations, the burn scars may need to be watched carefully. This
may be especially true on Tuesday as we may see some thunder over
the area as the storm approaches the region.
We will be in between systems on this day it should be predominantly
Friday into the weekend...
Another strong system dives southeast towards the 4 corners. Latest
deterministic GFS brings a slug of moisture across the area during
Saturday which hits the mtns/plains interface pretty hard. However,
the system then dives southward into southwestern NM. EC on the
other hand has a much more favorable track moving the system
relatively slowly from the 4 corners and then e-ne across Colorado.
If this track verifies, the storm may last a good 2 days across the
region bring the entire area mtn snows and lower elevation rain.
I should note that a ~few of the GFS ensembles have a solution
similar to the Euro guidance.
The potential for quite a bit of QPF is likely during this long term
fcst period. HPC QPF is showing widespread 2" amounts during the
next 7 days, with amounts approaching 5" along the mtns /plains
interface. The storms are relatively warm, but it will snow in the
higher elevations (how high still needs to be determined). The high
elevation snows will be quite heavy and wet, and I expect we will be
measuring the snow with a yardstick in the mtns.
Burns scars may need to be watched carefully, especially Tuesday and
possibly Friday as these two days the storms will be approaching the
region, and we may have enough CAPE for convection. /Hodanish
.AVIATION...(For the 18Z TAFS through 18Z Monday afternoon)
Issued at 1104 AM MDT Sun Mar 26 2017
As the cyclone propagates East, residual rain bands located on
the Northwest quadrant also propagate easterly. The Northeasterly
flow will bring favorable upslope flow for the COS region, hence
the vicinity of showers note located in the TAF. Once the winds
shift, precipitation will be shut off over the entire region.
Cloud cover begins to dissipate, but broken to overcast skies
should be observed. Winds become light and variable through the
overnight then shift southeast during the late morning hours. VFR
conditions are expected. Not included in the TAF, but should be
monitored is the inclusion of fog over the twilight hours. Due to
recent precipitation and the shallow diurnal boundary layer set
up, the formation of fog is a possibility. Check back TAF updates.
Lingering showers from upslope flow associated with the exiting
cyclone. Winds become light and variable through the overnight.
VFR conditions should be experienced, with the exception of the
beginning of the forecast period where some showers and lower
ceilings may be observed.
Gusting northerly winds slow down during the early afternoon,
becoming lighter and more variable as the overnight hours
approach. VFR conditions are expected throughout the forecast